COLUMBUS (WCMH) — The local chapter of the Fraternal Order of Police released a statement Wednesday after the death of an unarmed Black man by a Columbus police officer early Tuesday.
Officer Adam Coy shot and killed Andre’ Hill as Hill emerged from an open garage early Tuesday. Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther has called for Coy to be terminated from the police force for failing to properly use his body camera and for not immediately offering medical aid to Hill.
In its statement, the FOP said officers should be afforded due process of law and noted a record level of violent crime in Columbus in 2020, including multiple police officers who have been shot, “and the response from elected officials has been minimal at best.”
Here is the full statement from the Capital City Lodge of the FOP:
Our City has suffered a record level of violent crime in 2020. Homicides are the highest in recorded history, with no signs of slowing. The City of Columbus has had multiple officers shot at in the last couple of weeks and the response from elected officials has been minimal at best.
The Fraternal Order of Police believes that every citizen including officers deserves due process and that accountability is important. BCI is doing an investigation of recent shootings involving police officers. These investigations are meant to be independent which should also include independence from influence of city officials to maintain the integrity of that investigation. The FOP will be responsible and allow that investigation to be completed and for a review to be conducted by citizens that make up the Grand Jury in Franklin County. While we have seen others comment on an active investigation that they are not part of (or should not be part of), we encourage people to let the investigation be completed and not taint the process. The public and our officers deserve this without rhetoric from people not involved in the investigation.
The FOP and its members go to work every day realizing that they are risking their lives by putting on that uniform to protect the public and they will continue to do so because that is the oath they took. A loss of life is always a tragedy and officers never want to be in this position. However, politicians need to condemn all the violence in their city and work to bring the community together instead of further dividing it. That is what this community deserves.