The death of George Floyd at the hands of four officers of the Minneapolis Police Department has left me saddened for Floyd’s family, disgusted by the actions and inactions of the involved officers, and compelled to communicate to our community about how your police department is viewing this affront to justice.
In the days that have followed I have had conversations with various staff that have started with, “Have you seen the video of what the Minneapolis police officers did to that man?” In each case the response has been strikingly consistent and made up of revulsion and a feeling of dishonor for how this latest act subverts police community relations in general as well as specific concern for how it may affect some in our own community.
I can tell the community that all of our officers participate in rigorous training on appropriate use of force and we have policies and procedures designed and implemented to prevent the exact kind of horrific event that occurred in Minneapolis and has occurred elsewhere in this country. While training, policies and procedure are important, what is most salient is humanity, sanctity of life, and the duty for an officer to intercede. These are the discussions we are having during our Department briefings. The Piedmont Police Department is taking this horrible event, as we have with past events, to have hard conversations, look inwardly and continue our commitment to the prevention of such acts here.
I value accessibility to the community and even in our current times we have found ways to connect as a community. Should someone have the desire to talk about this most recent tragedy in Minneapolis, or the larger issues it represents, please reach out to me.
Chief of Police