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Statement from Interim City Manager Erika Storlie on Evanston Police Department Use-of-Force Incident

Post Date:05/30/2020 3:20 PM

ErikaStorlie_headshot_nov2019_WEBBelow is a statement from Interim City Manager Erika Storlie regarding an Evanston Police Department use-of-force incident that occurred this week:

"As your Interim City Manager, I have a responsibility to ensure that members of our community feel safe and protected by the Evanston Police Department and that we constantly work to maintain a positive relationship with all of the people who call Evanston home.

I am aware of a video circulating on the Internet of an arrest that occurred earlier this week and that people are rightfully concerned about what happened and whether or not it was appropriate.  

I have asked for the body camera video of the incident and I will be reviewing it with the City Council and Police Department leadership. This video will be made public. We take all use-of-force incidents seriously, and all such incidents are reviewed thoroughly by the Department’s Office of Professional Standards to determine if policies and procedures were followed and conduct was appropriate. Chief Cook has expedited the review of this incident. If conduct was not appropriate, please be assured that actions will be taken and individuals will be held accountable.

We are fortunate in Evanston to have many levels of police oversight and our officers are held to a high standard of conduct that is reinforced on a daily basis. Officer training and Department policies and procedures are continually reviewed and updated to ensure that they are in line with community standards and best practices, while providing police officers with the tools they need to do their jobs safely. 

The Evanston Police Department deeply values its longstanding community policing partnership with all Evanstonians, and is committed to upholding the values and expectations of our city. The City of Evanston and more specifically, the Evanston Police Department, firmly believes that public safety is built on trust, transparency and cooperation between police officers and the community they serve. This trust has to be earned on a daily basis and nurtured over time, and we are proud of our officers and their commitment to this philosophy. 

This incident happened during a time when we are all hurt and angered by the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. While one incident cannot be compared to the other, we cannot acknowledge one without acknowledging the other. What happened in Minneapolis is reprehensible, and we must do everything we can to ensure that history does not repeat itself.  We may feel powerless and hopeless, but we each have a personal and collective responsibility to take action to change hearts, minds and behaviors." 

Erika Storlie
Interim City Manager

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