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APD Chief Joins National Pledge for Police Accountability

Major Cities Chiefs Association Members Commit to Ethical Policing

June 11, 2020

APD Chief Geier joined members of the Major Cities Chiefs Association in releasing a statement denouncing the actions of the Minneapolis police officers who took the life of George Floyd. The Major Cities Chiefs Association is comprised of over 70 member cities across the country, who stated that the death of George Floyd was, by any measure of professional policing unnecessary, avoidable and criminal.

Leaders from some of the largest law enforcement organizations in the United States and Canada, including APD, put out the following statement which says in part:

We must be honest about our history and ask ourselves tough questions before we are able to offer the right answers. A history dating back over two centuries that has included institutional racism and more recently, a history that during the civil rights movement over 50 years ago, included injustices and police brutality against African Americans who were fighting for equal rights and equal protections. We need to hear what America is telling us right now and we need to take bold and courageous action to change the narrative of our history as it relates to the disparate impact and outcomes that policing has had - and continues to have - on African Americans, people of color and the disenfranchised.

Chief Geier has continued to support the community in voicing their frustrations and sorrows about racial injustice.  Chief Geier said, “We hear you, we are listening and we must do better.”

The Chiefs’ letter also calls for accountability as a cornerstone of reform. The Department of Justice stepped in five years ago to oversee APD and under the Keller administration, the reform effort was finally embraced and that work continues today. APD has implemented dozens of the changes required by the consent decree, focused on community policing, created a dedicated compliance bureau, reformed internal investigations, and overhauled use of force policies. The department is also implementing anti-racism training and participating in diversion programs. APD’s peer-to-peer ethical training means no officer believes it’s acceptable to stand by while another officer harms someone, as seen in Minneapolis.

“We just started down the long road of equality, inclusion and reform a few years ago,” said Mayor Tim Keller. “This kind of commitment to change from our APD leadership is an important part of making sure we all work together to see this through in lasting, meaningful ways.”