Chief Harris on the Death of George Floyd and Protests Throughout Nation

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Chief Demetrious Harris’ Statement on the Death of George Floyd and Protests Throughout Our Nation

As many of you are aware, during the week of May 25, 2020, video surfaced of the arrest of an African- American male by the Minneapolis Police. Cellphone footage captured 46-year-old, George Floyd, who can be seen on the ground with his hands cuffed behind his back while an officer knelt on his neck for several minutes as Floyd moaned and yelled: “I can’t breathe.” The video ends with paramedics lifting a limp Floyd onto a stretcher and placing him in an ambulance.

This video is upsetting, disappointing, and infuriating. It is especially troubling to see other officers who stood by while Mr. Floyd called for help.

This act of Police misconduct does not represent the core values of any police department. Their actions are inexcusable, unexplainable and overwhelmingly disappointing.

I consider Policing an honorable profession. Each of us are servants who chose to lead consequential lives in service to something greater than ourselves. The actions of those select few do not reflect the decent men and women who serve our communities every day. Here in Edmonston, we take pride in our oath to diligently and faithfully, without partiality or prejudice, to serve. This can only be accomplished if we hold ourselves and our coworkers accountable to this solemn oath.

As Dr. King once wrote, “We refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt.”    And “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny.”

We applaud those who chose to peacefully assemble in their communities to stand for justice and equality.

The Edmonston Police Department stands by these words. We are committed to our continuous high level of training, our commitment to de-escalation, and our track record of first-class service.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the family & friends of George Floyd, and the communities affected by this tragedy.