Incident in Philadelphia (9): the “official” response

Latest in a series of posts about the death of Walter Wallace

“The real violence was perpetrated by a knife-wielding man, who confronted our police officers,” [Police Union president] John McNesby said in a statement. “These officers followed their training and police department policy. It’s completely inappropriate that these officers continue to be vilified for doing their job.”


The Mayor
click here, mins. 18-20

Will be announcing new programs. Releasing bodycam footage. Recognizes a feeling that nothing has changed. A willingness to be transparent and accountable is a sign that things must change, are changing. Shining a light that will bring a new day — peace, trust, healing. Open process that will help us heal.

The Police Chief
click here, mins, 25:40-30

After detailing the internal investigative process regarding officer action, calls special attention to explanation of programs (some in process) designed to improve the department’s “service to the community” and about to be implemented with the Department of Behavioral Health, involving deescalation training, a medical health person embedded with dispatch and police radio, implicit bias training, active bystanderdship training (officers intervening with other officers), with a decision-tree for dispatchers.

Behavioral Health official
click here, mins. 30-38

Points to long history of collaboration with police. Innovative initiatives with health-centered approach to law enforcement. Beginning a class with dispatchers next week. Embedded program of mental health specialists. Mental health navigator in dispatch room. Has “Network of Neighbors” coalition. Sadly trauma is ongoing.

The District Attorney

The District Attorney pledged support to the Wallace family, praised them for willingness to release the bodycam footage, and “fought back tears” at the wake, saying, “Philadelphia owes you a lot.”

Leave a Reply