Ferguson Mayor Jason Knowles defended his city’s apparent ignorance of widespread discriminatory activity among its police force by saying city officials were part-time and lacked the oversight mechanisms needed to hold various city institutions to account.
“The mayor and city council of Ferguson are part-time public servants,” Knowles told George Stephanopoulos on This Week Sunday morning. “We hire a professional staff to oversee and administration on the daily basis what goes on in Ferguson…We don’t monitor on the daily basis everyone’s emails.”
Knowles’ remarks come after a scathing Department of Justice report that accused the city’s police force of essentially acting as a racist collection agency. The allegations have led some to recommend dismantling the Ferguson PD entirely, something Attorney General Eric Holder isn’t opposed to.
“Very few communities in this country have undergone this level of scrutiny,” Knowles said. “We’re the only one in the St. Louis area to have undergone that scrutiny.”
However Knowles did say that Ferguson planned on implementing a number of the DOJ’s recommendations, including heightened training and a civilian review board that would more quickly highlight potential discriminatory issues. Alas, the first meeting about that board didn’t go so well.
Watch the clip below, via ABC News:
[Image via screengrab]
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