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Chauvin verdict shows police officers everywhere that there are consequences for actions

Mayor Harry Rilling.

Today’s guilty verdict confirms what we have known for nearly a year: Derek Chauvin’s actions were criminal and he needed to be held accountable. Each moment of this trial was gut-wrenching and heartbreaking. While today’s guilty verdict will not bring George Floyd back to his family and friends, I hope it brings them a sense of peace and closure.

Police Officers are here to protect and serve us, the community. I firmly believe that a majority of officers take their oaths and responsibility to protect seriously. However, any officer who abuses their power or who watches silently and allows it to happen is not fit to wear the badge of honor. They tarnish the badge of all the good officers who serve with distinction.

Today’s guilty verdict confirms for officers everywhere that there will be consequences for their actions. Good cops should not protect bad officers. I commend the law enforcement officials who spoke out against Derek Chauvin during this trial. We need officers to speak up more often. When I think of all the officers who lost their lives in the line of duty, who continue to serve us honorably day in, day out, this verdict supports them.

Today’s guilty verdict is a historic decision not only for George Floyd, but for all victims of police violence. Philando Castile. Ahmaud Arbery. Breonna Taylor. Their names remain fresh in our hearts and minds. Too often, families, friends, loved ones, and entire communities are left with pain and anguish when justice is not served.

Today, justice prevailed for George Floyd.

15 comments

Paul Cantor April 20, 2021 at 8:59 pm

Right on, Mr. Mayor. Now on to the trial of the three officers, Thao, Kueng, and Lane, charged with aiding and abetting Chauvin.

John ONeill April 20, 2021 at 11:26 pm

Question for Cantor: How many cops have been killed in the line of duty over the past 4 months ?
Do you really care? How come you haven’t been passionate about them or their families?
I sense there are some out there who care more about trees than the 99.9% of the cops out there doing a job few gave the guts to do today. I find that concerning.
Chauvin is a pathetic human who deserves every day in prison he gets. That being said when was the last time liberal idealogues thanked a cop for anything.
I’d like to publicly thank Chief K and his team in blue for everything they do. Left wing liberals live in hypotheticals. Cops don’t have that luxury….Speaking of liberals – Bridgeport, Hartford and New Haven have been controlled by Liberals for 40 years…How’s that worked out for their constituents ?? Just think about that for a second..

Concerned Taxpayer April 21, 2021 at 12:12 am

This mayor was conveniently silent on the CT police accountability act and was nowhere to be found during Duffs bullying claims against NPD but now there is an opportunity to speak up on a far away incident, so he takes the obvious popular approach for style points. Will he ever say anything about the local police accountability act or Duff situation?

M. Murray April 21, 2021 at 6:38 am

I should not have to remind Mayor Rilling that justice was done in the case of Philando Castile. Officer Yanez was charged, put on trial, and judged by a jury of his peers and found not guilty based on the evidence.

David Muccigrosso April 21, 2021 at 7:28 am

@John – I’m more concerned about justice for the officers found involved in wrongdoing right here in our own backyard. Sure, it’s a dangerous job, but right now we have cops taking out the untracked cruiser so they can drink on the job, and logging humanly impossible amounts of overtime. And what was our Dear Mayor’s response? Oh yeah, appointing a force veteran to a sinecure desk job so he could give a monthly lecture to his buddies about “ethics”.

David Muccigrosso April 21, 2021 at 7:31 am

Also, @John, when was the last Norwalk cop killed on the job? Been some time, IIRC. Not to advocate for tunnelvision here, but let’s focus on the issues in front of us, in which we all have common interests, instead of letting national politics divide us into the usual camps.

This is why I tirelessly advocate for electoral reform. Perhaps Ranked Choice or my own birthplace of STL’s Approval Voting would give us better leaders than Mayor Thuggy McThuggerson.

Priscilla Feral April 21, 2021 at 7:46 am

Mayor Harry Rilling’s comments frame the decency that prevails in our community.
When police anywhere escalate an otherwise minor situation using their badge and guns to demand compliance, white people in the Suburbs need to better comprehend the impact and discrimination for Black and brown people.

Collie April 21, 2021 at 8:29 am

O’Neill, you are making your potential hatred overshadow the point of Mayor Rilling’s comment. I am not a fan of Rilling, but it was good he released this statement and I commend him for that.. What Chauvin did was wrong, and I’m glad you pointed that out, but sometimes just leave it at that, their is no need to add all the other stuff. In every field of work we have good people and bad, all we want is acknowledgement that bad cops do exist and we all need to make sure they are held accountable when they don’t do the job taxpayers need and deserve. We also have law breakers out there, but no one deserves to be kills the way this man was. Open your mind and be welcoming to all.

stuart garrelick April 21, 2021 at 12:01 pm

Wow. It seems stupid to say so but I find myself agreeing, in one way or another, with both the Mayor and the three commenters above. Neat trick but I managed it. The most poignant comment for me was the John ONeil calling Chauvin a “pathetic” figure, “deserving” of every day he will spend in jail.
The system may not be broken but it sure is damaged and needs an overhauling. But how many of us can conceive of getting up in the morning, going to work and ending the day in jail, later convicted of murder and facing all or a good part of the rest of our life in jail. And risking our lives on the job to boot. Not me. And despite the fact that I am certain there are racists in the police department, as there are in everything, I can’t conceive of someone waking up in the morning and deciding to kill a person of color that day. Do we really know and understand how that happens, over and over?
Locally the Duff incident did precipitate a “blue wall” reaction and a whitewashing internal investigation. Both the Senator, the NPD and the citizens of Norwalk deserved better.
Hopefully we are seeing the beginning of a new era in community/police relations. We (including people of color) need the police!

Norwalker April 21, 2021 at 1:12 pm

There always has been consequences for police officers actions. Familiarize yourself with SCOTUS case law. The problem with society today is there are no consequences for criminals actions.

Bryan Meek April 21, 2021 at 2:41 pm

Sometimes silence about matters having nothing to do with Norwalk is more appropriate. Any comments on the accountability in Fairfield with respect to stealing enough drugs from the police locker to kill a horse? Do you define a $100k settlement and a state granted non profit job working with at risk youth as accountability?

Victor Cavallo April 21, 2021 at 2:47 pm

Yes, consequences. This re-election warning from the Mayor – a former Norwalk police chief, the current Norwalk police chief’s boss, a current member of Norwalk’s Police Commission, a political loyalist who allowed a powerful state senator to malign the entire Norwalk Police Department, and a supporter of the ruinous Police Accountability law – shows police officers in Norwalk that there are consequences for being a Norwalk police officer. And those consequences are not good. So think twice, officers, before you act. And if you can, take your pension and run.

Sid Welker April 23, 2021 at 1:51 pm

@Collie, Bravo. Very well spoken and even keeled. @John O’neil, almost everything you say on here is anti-Rilling. He could lower taxes, build new schools and pretty much do everything on your personal agenda and you’d probably still have more hatred against him than you do now. Then we have @bryan Meeks “Mr. below the belt”. I was reading through these comments waiting to see if and when you’d pop in with the “family shot”. And just like clockwork, there you were. You once represented this city in an elective role, spent more time on this message board then at B.O.E meetings and now just rant on here full time? Love your passion but stick to the topics. If I was a registered voter I wouldn’t vote for Harry either but that doesn’t mean we need to bring family affairs into this. At my age I’ve learned that. You obviously haven’t.

John ONeill April 23, 2021 at 2:53 pm

Hey Sid; If you ask Mayor Rilling I think you’d find your comment above
somewhere between absurd and bizarre. I like Harry, and I’ve told him that more than a few times
Now, if you brought up Duff or our missing in action rep.from the 137th I’d plead guilty as charged. AND I’m not just spitting into the wind !!

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