President Trump has weighed in:
Police Chief, and most of the police in Rochester, N.Y., have resigned. The Democrat Mayor and, of courses, Governor Cuomo, have no idea what to do. New York State is a mess - No Money, High Taxes & Crime, Everyone Fleeing. November 3rd. We can fix it!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 8, 2020
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Rochester, NY Police Chief La'Ron Singletary said in a surprise announcement on Tuesday that he will be retiring at the age of 40 after less than 18 months on the job, after controversy erupted over the March death of a black man while in police custody.
His deputy and the city's entire command staff joined him in leaving, according to ABC News and Bloomberg.
Speaking via Zoom, Mayor Lovely Warren confirmed the moves, adding "The Chief was not asked to give his resignation."
When asked who would be in charge of the police department this evening in the event of new protests, Warren said she didn’t know and asked for the briefing to be adjourned so that a replacement could be found. As of Sunday, a total of 37 people had been arrested and eight police officers hospitalized amid the unrest. -Bloomberg
Singletary came under fire following news of the death of Daniel Prude, a mentally ill black man who died of asphyxiation after police attempted to take him into protective custody in March - two months before the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, yet the incident didn't become public until last week, according to the Democrat & Chronicle.
Prude, 41, had been suffering from a mental health episode and was running naked throughout the streets. Once officers caught him, a 'spit hood' was placed over his head after he began spitting. He was then held face down on the pavement for just over two minutes, after which he stopped breathing. Prude was pronounced DOA to the hospital from asphyxia.
On Monday, naked protesters wore 'spit hoods' outside the Rochester police headquarters in protest.
In a Tuesday statement, Chief Singletary said in part: "As a man of integrity, I will not sit idly by while outside entities attempt to destroy my character," adding "The events over the past week are an attempt to destroy my character and integrity."
Wow! After 20 years LaRon Singletary retires from RPD pic.twitter.com/gLMDoCOjMe— Jazzy T (@JazzyTOnAir) September 8, 2020
No successors have been announced.