ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — For the first time, Rochester Police Chief La’Ron Singletary sat down for a public meeting with the Police Accountability Board Thursday evening.
“And that’s what we have to be able to do. We have to see each other,” said Chief Singletary.
The discussion was often polite. The major questions focused on board disciplinary powers, and the role of their relationship going forward. The Chief says that’s still being litigated.
“Once that has been determined by the courts, I think that’s when we can have those conversations as to what involvement the PAB will have in any type of process,” he says.
Shani Wilson, Chair of the PAB later asked, “What would you like the public to know about recent events, especially around excessive force and defunding police?”
Singletary says excessive force needs to be looked at case by case, but should not be tolerated, especially in the case of George Floyd in Minnesota. When it comes to defunding, he advocates reform and investing in police. He says that will lead to a stronger community.
“When you invest in a police department … You want to give your officers the best tools to go out there to do the job they need to do when dealing with the public,” he says.
Other questions focused on mental stress for police, dealing with minors, and improving public perception of police in the community. While some answers either couldn’t be discussed, or rely on the pending court decision of the PAB-RPD relationship, all agreed exchanges like this can result in many positives going forward.
“We need to be able to push the envelope forward, and we push the envelope forward by having conversations, dialogue and actions that follow,” says Singletary.
To watch the full meeting, click here.