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To The Residents of Lawrence,
I feel compelled to say something. I cannot stand by and let
the incident in Minnesota go by without stating how disappointed and disgusted
I am. After watching the video footage of the incident in Minnesota, I was shocked
and outraged, my heart sank. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. How
can anyone, never mind a police officer, treat a human being this way? As
I watched the video, I found myself saying over and over, as the minutes went
on “Get off him”. I can’t and won’t try to justify the officers’ actions, they
are reprehensible, indefensible and No excuses can be made. This should not
have happened. No one deserves to be treated this way! This is a very sad
day in this country. My heart goes out to the family of George Floyd and the
Minneapolis, Minnesota community.
As a community we are left with yet again another wedge
between us. Not only do these types of actions tarnish our badge but they
destroy our relationship with the community. We have made it a priority in
Lawrence to build a strong relationship with our community, knowing that this
is the only way to build a better Lawrence. That trust between us is so
important if we are going to continue to change Lawrence together for the
The men and women of the Lawrence Police Department are from
the community, they are hardworking, dedicated, well trained and professional.
They are not happy about the events in Minnesota. They, like me are disgusted
and saddened by the treatment of Mr. Floyd. They also see the damage that this
has caused between the police and the community. They are committed to
continuing to build your trust every day.
We know that negative events around the world involving
police officers affect your views of policing. The overwhelming majority of
police officers are good people, dedicated to helping their respective
communities. We ask that you judge us by what is happening here in Lawrence.
Please don’t judge us by the disgusting acts of one officer. Being a police
officer is not an easy job but we are committed to policing by treating everyone
with respect, dignity, empathy and procedural justice for all. The way it
should be, the way we would want our families to be treated. This is our
continued pledge to you. Our hope is that we can use this injustice to rally
together to make Lawrence stronger. Thank you and stay safe.