This entire episode is based on the premise that unknown individuals released video information, supporting the Jacqueline Craig’s version of events from December 21, 2016. The truth of the matter is that the Chief-of-Police should have released the video and redacted the identity of anyone who was legally protected. Transparency was an overused word but was underutilized. Actions similar to this led to the introduction of Senate Bill (#1201) during this legislative session. Senate Bill (#1201) would have prevented individuals from withholding information from the public, contained in body camera footage. The Ft. Worth Chief-of-Police, (or any other top officials) would be required to release the video information. Exceptions would include pending criminal charges. However, in the Ft. Worth incident, the Chief-of-Police is not fully transparent; he had his own version of the behavior’s classification and called it rudeness. When the video release dispels his assertions, he answers with an emotional response that led to an investigation that only centered on two high-ranking African Americans. The end result is a tense and fractured relationship between many of the members of the community and the police department. The gap has widened, when so many in the Ft. Worth community have worked to mend the fences. Our brothers and sisters in the Ft. Worth Police Department, who sought (and will receive) our help, are now left with the daunting task of facing a leader who may or may not make decisions that are best for their community.
Regardless of race, gender, religion, or national origin, we cannot relax our expectations for what is right. EXCELLENCE AND FAIRNESS HAVE NO COLOR. When we fail to do what is right and ethical, we should not be able to punish, disparage, or negatively affect those who expose our sins. The demotions of two outstanding members of the Ft. Worth Police Department’s Command Staff on circumstantial, dis-jointed, and subjectively produced facts, lends itself to a very important question. What is the greater wrong, the fact that the Chief failed to be transparent and was misleading to the public through omission, or whistleblowing on the Chief for being disingenuous to the good citizens of Ft. Worth?
We, the Black Police Association of Greater Dallas profoundly disagree, and wholeheartedly condemn the demotion of Assistant Chief Abdul Prigden, and Deputy Chief Vance Keyes.
Thomas L. Glover, Sr.
President, Black Police Association of Greater Dallas