Retired police officer Indian Ernie releases third book
- EFN Staff | April 15, 2019
A former Saskatoon police officer who is recognized in the Indigenous community and nicknamed ‘Indian Ernie’ released his third book back in February to coincide with Aboriginal storytelling month. Best-selling author Ernie Louttit released a book called ‘The Unexpected Cop: Indian Ernie on a Life of Leadership’ published by the University of Regina Press. Louttit was known for helping put an end to the ‘Starlight Tours’ in Saskatoon. A public reading and book launch took place at the First Nations University of Canada in Regina end of February.
“I read a little bit of the first chapter and different aspects of the book,” he said. “I turned it into a lively discussion of what I wrote and why I wrote it about being a writer.”
Louttit is a member of the Missanabie Cree First Nation joined the Canadian Armed Forces in 1978 and joined the Saskatoon Police Service in 1987.
In his book, he states that he would walk around the poorest neighbourhoods and the local kids would follow him ask if he was Indian. Within a couple of months, whenever he showed up, the local kids would loudly exclaim, “It’s Indian Ernie!” The name stuck with him for his entire career. He left his career policing in 2013 and became a writer and a public speaker.
“I felt like more of a storyteller than a writer,” as stated in the Preface of the Unexpected Cop. “Telling stories from my experiences was how I passed on knowledge.”
The first book ‘Indian Ernie: Perspectives on Policing and Leadership’ was published in 2013 and his second book ‘More Indian Ernie: Insights from the Streets’ was released two years later. His current book is more introspective, reflective and editorial in some ways. The biggest challenge for Louttit in ‘The Unexpected Cop: Indian Ernie on a Life of Leadership’ was writing like no one had read the first two books because it was a new publisher.
“It was fun to write this book,” he said. “If I could get the ideas about leadership, community and commitment into people’s minds in my lifetime, then I’m a happy guy.”
Paula Daigle, FNUniv librarian, helped organize the Aboriginal storytelling month reading from Louttit which coincided with his book launch.
“His talk was fantastic. I really wanted him to talk about his role in the Neil Stonechild inquiry because I knew how important it was,” she said. “He was the only Indigenous police officer who is talking about his experiences while he was an active police officer. So, I find his information that he’s providing when he’s coming out doing these kinds of talks is very important.”