The NAACP would like to clarify information disseminated in the media last week.
The NAACP unapologetically upholds all past decisions to share with the community the excessive force complaints that have been filed with the NAACP regarding the conduct of certain Lima police officers, where the evidence of such actions was video documented. The NAACP is not against the LPD because without law enforcement there would be anarchy. However, it is the responsibility of the chief and mayor to ensure that when officers act inappropriately they are held accountable.
The mayor is the chief executive officer of the city; therefore, it is his responsibility to ensure his subordinates protect all citizens in the community. This community voted the mayor back into office, which indicates it wanted more of the same to the extent that so-called community leaders went door-to-door on his behalf. Also, those who decided not to participate in the election gave a vote for more of the same. The NAACP will hold whomever is mayor accountable to ensure that all citizens are represented because we are not connected to a political party. We will not be silent when issues arise that infringe on the civil rights of individuals.
The intent of the press conference was to inform the community we are not against the LPD. We want the community to know that our office does a thorough investigation of complaints. We do not take on every complaint because of discrepancies. We want anyone who files a complaint to be truthful.
Lima should be a place where all citizens are treated fairly.
Ron Fails, president of the Lima unit of the NAACP