The South Bend Police Union released a scathing statement against Mayor Pete Buttigieg, a 2020 Democrat presidential candidate, over his handling of a white cop shooting and killing a black man.

The union claimed that Buttigieg has exploited this incident for political gain, which has driven “a wedge between law enforcement officers and the community they took an oath to serve.”

The Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #36 released the letter after reports came out that “St. Joseph County Prosecutor Kenneth Cotter filed a petition asking a judge to appoint a special prosecutor to investigate” the shooting. Buttigieg also promised “he would write the U.S. Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division and notify Cotter that he’d like an independent investigator appointed.”

The union expressed support for Sgt. Ryan O’Neill, the cop who shot and killed Eric Logan on June 16. Police reports state that “Logan was breaking into cars and approached O’Neill with a knife.”

The letter criticized Buttigieg for focusing on this one incident while ignoring other families of other shootings. They pointed out that “Buttigieg has yet to comment on the largest shooting in the recent history of South bend or on one juvenile killing another earlier in the week.” These actions have left “others ostracized” since he has not reached out to these families affected by these tragedies.

The majority of the comments on the Facebook picture support the South Bend police department.

It should not shock anyone that Buttigieg has concentrated on this shooting. It seems the police union is correct because as Mike wrote over the weekend, Buttigieg does not poll well with black voters. One poll from this month showed that almost half of black voters have not heard of him. Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-OH) told The Daily Beast that “Pete has a black problem” and does not “know of one black person out of Indiana who supports him.”

Black Lives Matters activists confronted Buttigieg over the weekend. Logan’s brother vented that people in the community have grown tired of Buttigieg allowing his “officers to do whatever they want to do” while Logan’s mother said that the mayor has “not done a damn thing about me or my son or none of these people out here.”

The union wrote that the department has increased “the accountability of officers” in the past several years. The department has also implemented “swift and firm” discipline on officers who violate their policies, which has led to an increase on “[T]he number of suspension days, officers terminated,” and resignations due to the policy changes. Other changes include the inability to reach higher ranks due to violations or move departments.


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