Former Rochester, NY police chief La’Ron Singletary appears before members of Rochester City Council on Friday as part of his investigation into Daniel Prude’s death last year.
Prude, a black man with a history of mental illness, died of asphyxiation after meeting officers from the Rochester Police Department in March. However, details of his death were not disclosed for about six months, sparking allegations of cover-up and protests demanding justice and police accountability.
Former Rochester, NY police chief La’Ron Singletary, pictured at a September press conference, was fired from the department later that month. He is deposed by members of Rochester City Council who are investigating Daniel Prude’s death in police custody in March. Michael M. Santiago / Getty Images Hide caption
Michael M. Santiago / Getty Images
Michael M. Santiago / Getty Images
Prude has died ruled a murder from the Monroe County Medical Examiner.
Singletary’s testimony comes at a particularly tense time for the city as Rochester was brought into the national spotlight after another police encounter, this time with one nine year old girl.
The child, Who is black and has not been namedwas handcuffed, put in a police car, and sprayed with pepper when she called repeatedly for her father. The January 29 incident also sparked protests across the city this week, albeit not as large as demonstrations last year when details of Prude’s death emerged.
City officials announced this week that three officers involved in the pepper spray incident were present removed from patrol duties. During the department’s investigation, two officers were taken on administrative leave and the other officer was suspended.
Singletary testifies before the City Council’s Independent Investigation Special Committee, chaired by Councilors Michael Patterson and Malik Evans.
Evans, a Democrat, announced last month He ran for mayor against the incumbent Lovely Warren. The mayor, a Democrat, has been heavily criticized for handling Prude’s death and is being prosecuted Campaign Funding Violations.
She entered one no guilty pledge to the charges, resisting demands for her resignation.
The New York attorney general is also Carrying out a separate Investigation of Prude’s death.
labyrinth Singletary fired in September, days after he said he and all command personnel were in Rochester Police Department plan to step down from the job as the protests against Prude’s death increased.
“The boss wasn’t asked to resign because I think he’s doing his best,” Warren said of Singletary when she announced that he was stepping down. Warren had promoted him to chief of police in April 2019.
Before Singletary was fired, Prude family lawyers Police video released his encounter with the police.
Prude’s brother had called 911 to report him was missing and are experiencing a mental health crisis.
“Daniel was very charismatic,” said Joe Prude NPR’s morning edition in September. “He was a good guy. He was down to earth, a good, generous man at heart.”
He said his brother left the house when it was freezing, wearing only long johns and a tank top. He said Prude had suicidal thoughts and had just been released from Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester.
Joe Prude added that he called the police because he was concerned about his brother’s safety.
When the police met Prude, he was naked and There are reports that he had contracted the coronavirus. The officers handcuffed him and placed a mesh cover known as a “spit hood” over his head to prevent him from spitting and biting.
Officers then put his head to the ground and Prude died a few days later.