Ferguson Police Chief: Race Relations ‘Is A Top Priority’ After Teen Shooting

Marcelle Stewart, left, confronts police officers during a march and rally in downtown Ferguson, Mo., Monday, Aug. 11, 2014. The group marched along the closed street, rallying in front of the town's police headquart... Marcelle Stewart, left, confronts police officers during a march and rally in downtown Ferguson, Mo., Monday, Aug. 11, 2014. The group marched along the closed street, rallying in front of the town's police headquarters to protest the shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown by Ferguson police officers. Brown, who was killed in a confrontation with police in the St. Louis suburb, was shot Saturday, Aug. 9, 2014, and died following the confrontation with police. Stewart said she was attending the rally because her son-in-law Jason Moore died after being shot with a taser by police. (AP Photo/Sid Hastings) MORE LESS
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Ferguson, Mo., Police Chief Thomas Jackson told reporters Wednesday race relations is “a top priority” for the department amid tense confrontations between protesters and law enforcement after the police shooting of an African-American teen.

“Race relations is a top priority right now,” Jackson said at a Wednesday press conference. “I’m working with the Justice Department to address that.”

Some of those participating in the protests have told reporters that the police shooting of Michael Brown, 18, on Saturday brought to a head long-simmering tensions between police and the community. The Ferguson police department is almost entirely white in a city that is two-thirds African-American.

Jackson acknowledged that the shooting had brought “an undertow… to the surface” and pledged “to fix what’s wrong.”

“I’m being advised now by the community relations, number of measures that we can use to improve race relations, community relations,” he said. “Tell me what to do and we’ll do it.”

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Notable Replies

  1. Better late than never, unless you were Michael Brown.

  2. Perhaps, just perhaps, chief, there wouldn’t be the current problem if you had made race relations your first priority years ago.

  3. Race – Ferguson police can relate to that!

  4. Avatar for darcy darcy says:

    Typical. About 70% of Ferguson’s residents are black with the local police force and connected politicos at 95% white. So, did police chief Jackson ever consider forward thinking, just in case one day there may be a “problem”. Nah, everything under control, it’s all good.

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