Erase a black mark on the reputation of the Lynn Police Department

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Transparency and accountability are the credentials Lynn Police Chief Christopher R. Reddy referred to when he announced on Saturday that five officers had resigned and one had been fired in connection with texts between two officers who, according to a police statement, included racially offensive language. and evidence of drug use by officers.

The officers have not been named in the media and there is no indication that the six – along with two other officers suspended in connection with the texts – have made any public statements regarding their conduct and the disciplinary action taken against them.

But the evidence of racist language and drug use by city police should alarm everyone in Lynn. They alarmed Mayor Jared Nicholson who told officers. . .are so far below what most would even consider a minimum standard.

We agree with Reddy – a career police officer from Lynn – when he said “The actions of these people do not reflect the core values ​​of this department.” We’re also confident that the majority of Lynn’s police and townspeople share Reddy’s view.

More than 18 months have passed since the death of black George Floyd at the hands of a white Minneapolis police officer. The national outrage sparked by this killing has recalibrated and renewed the debate over racism in America and amplified a call for a review and transformation of the way law enforcement is carried out across the country.

This transformation is reshaping law enforcement in Lynn, with city officials endorsing unarmed crisis response approaches to local incidents where police and mental health intersect.

The Lynn Police Department is engaged in the discussion of how the unarmed response will be applied at the street level and Reddy, who was named chief last May, and Nicholson, who took office three years ago. weeks, bring relatively new perspectives to the work of displacement that discussion and the global transformation of police work.

Reddy is committed to improving community policing and closing the gap between street officers and residents of Lynn neighborhoods. This commitment, more than any other, will erase the black mark stained on the reputation of the Lynn Police Department by the six officers removed from the ranks of the department and two others disciplined as part of the text exchange.

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