NAACP addresses St. Petersburg Police policies - WJBF-TV ABC 6 Augusta-Aiken

NAACP addresses St. Petersburg Police policies

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ST. PETERSBURG, FL (WFLA) -

The St. Petersburg chapter of the NAACP is asking the police department to review some of its policies. Representatives with the organization held a news conference today, voicing some of their concerns about recent events in the midtown area of the city. They say recent shootings involving police officers as well as pursuits need to be looked at more closely. "The recent shooting into the car with teenagers, also went into one lady's house. That's a bad policy." Said the Reverend Dr. Manuel Sykes, with the NAACP, "Because people in the line of fire could be killed. "

Willie Robinson has lived in St. Petersburg his entire life. He recently celebrated his 79th birthday. He says he's seen the relationship with the police department go from good, to bad to worse. "I've seen the, I would say the rise and fall of the attitude of the people here in St. Pete. " Said Robinson. He says he feels some officers believe they can bend the rules to enforce the law. "it seems to us that they makes the law, they the only ones that can break the law. "

St. Petersburg Police Chief Chuck Harmon was quick to respond, saying recent a recent pursuit and officer involved shooting are cases that are still under investigation. He says his door is always open to discuss issues with people in the community. "if there are issues out there, then we want to address those." Said the chief. "Some of the information that I heard from the press release was about diversity and those kinds of things. This is probably the most diverse staff I've ever had. "

The Reverend Dr. Manuel Sykes says he plans to send a letter to the police department this week, and hopes to get a response within 30 days.

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