‘Reprehensible and inexcusable’: Dane County Chiefs of Police release statement condemning Minneapolis officers involved in George Floyd incident

Dane County police agencies are unified in their response to the video showing the arrest and death of George Floyd
Floyd Web

MADISON, Wis. — In response to a viral video showing the arrest and death of George Floyd, a 46-year-old black man who died after a white Minneapolis police officer kneeled on his neck for nearly 10 minutes, the Dane County Chiefs of Police Association have released a joint statement condemning what they saw on the video.

The statement from association is a unified response from president Kristen Roman, Fitchburg Police Chief Chad Brecklin, Shorewood Hills Police Chief Aaron Chapin, Monona Police Department Lt. Sara Deuman and University of Wisconsin-Madison Police Department Assistant Chief Kari Sasso.

The statement says in part:

“Once again, we find ourselves devastated by an appalling and heartbreaking use of force incident that has resulted in those we have sworn to protect and serve fearing for their own safety at the hands of those whose duty it is to keep them safe. While we have yet to gain all available information about the incident that took place in Minneapolis on Monday, the videos we’ve seen are abundantly clear. What more do we need to see or know to conclude that the actions of the Minneapolis police officers involved in the death of George Floyd were heinous and unacceptable. Regardless of further information that may be discovered in this case, nothing can justify the actions or inactions of these officers. If someone calls for help, it is our duty to help. When struggling with someone we are attempting to arrest who tells us they cannot breathe, we are trained to reposition them and offer relief. And while there were moral and tactical shortcomings here, there exists the added weight in the knowledge that these occurred in the all-too-often context of police victimizing an unarmed person of color – sadly, an unsurprising tragedy.”

Roman said the actions of the officers involved do not represent the training or policies of Dane County officers and that the actions used in Floyd’s case were “reprehensible and inexcusable.”

“We have worked hard here in Dane County for many years to build trust with our communities of color. In the aftermath of Ferguson, local law enforcement leaders and leaders of color came together to form the United Way Law Enforcement and Leaders of Color Collaboration aimed at proactively addressing these trust gaps and working together to create strategies designed to improve the relationships and outcomes between law enforcement and communities of color.”

Roman said the association is proud of the work done and improvements made in Dane County, but said she understands we still have a long way to go.

“We the members of the Dane County Chiefs of Police Association rededicate ourselves to this work and together with our community we mourn the death of George Floyd. Our thoughts are with his family and everyone else who has been impacted by this horrific incident.”