Interim Ferguson Police Chief: Cops Worry About Being the Next Darren Wilson
Interim Ferguson police chief Al Eickhoff gave an interview to The L.A. Times this weekend in which he opened up about building trust between police and the community, the aftermath of Michael Brown‘s shooting and the rioting last year, and concerns about police morale.
He obviously doesn’t think all the criticism of Ferguson and the PD is fair, and said he’s telling officers they shouldn’t worry as long as they “treat everybody with respect, treat everybody nice.”
But, Eickhoff admits, “There’s a lot of stress… Everyone wonders, ‘Could I be the next Darren?’ It’s hard on the officer, and it affects their families too.”
They’re referring, of course, to Officer Darren Wilson, who became the subject of intense national scrutiny after fatally shooting Brown. Neither the grand jury nor the Department of Justice charged Wilson.
The DOJ did, however, release a report finding the Ferguson police department targeted black people and some individuals sent racist emails. Eickhoff said he’s telling people, “Do not believe everything in the DOJ report because the people doing the investigations are not policemen.”
Right now, however, the goal is to “get past the hard feelings.” Eickhoff claimed that people really just want to move on and get beyond all the protesting, as well as looking to hire more minorities.
You can read the full L.A. Times interview here.
[image via screengrab]
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