Ferguson Unrest Response
Local authorities are addressing the crisis in Ferguson, MO.
Asheville Police Chief William Anderson says he understands there are concerns. That is why he is making sure people know about his department's responsive procedures.
Chief Anderson says he believes his department is worthy of confidence, that's why he is sharing this information with the public.
In a statement released yesterday, Chief Anderson addresses APD's track record of responding to demonstrations.
He says his department takes constitutional rights and public safety very seriously. Officers are trained in crowd management strategies that allow for the free expression of ideas but at the same time protect the public.
Chief Anderson says Moral Monday rallies, occupy Asheville and open carry demonstrations are prime examples.
Concern across the nation though has turned to the use of military style equipment in police departments.
Anderson says their use of specialized tactical equipments is reserved for operations that require deployment of highly trained and likewise specialized emergency response team members.
He uses a standoff in January on Max Street as an example of that kind of response.
Chief Anderson says, "I believe the concerns of the public are the concerns of the APD, and these conversations are important for us to have in order to grow and remain strong as a community. Just recently, both Sheriff Duncan and I participated in a use of force forum, hosted by the Asheville Buncombe Community Relations Council. It is my hope that while we have these conversations, we will look to each other for support."
Chief Anderson ends by saying our hearts and prayers go out to everyone affected by the recent events.
You can read the Chief's full statement, just click here.
A peaceful rally and protest is scheduled for this Sunday at 6pm at Pack Square. Organizers are asking those who attend to dress in red.