Members of the community called Tuesday for the removal of Los Angeles Police Chief Michel Moore over a statement he made claiming that people using violence and capitalizing on George Floyd's killing in Minneapolis police custody were as responsible for his death as the now-fired officers.
A line of callers, some using expletive-laced comments during the Police Commission meeting broadcast online due to the COVID-19 quarantine, addressed Moore directly.
"You have failed everyone here and we don't trust you anymore," said Amparo Astojic. "You need to be fired, Chief Moore. You need to really resign."
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Kimberlee Isaacs said she was angry.
"I'm outraged that the police department has been militarized," said Kimberlee Isaacs, who added she was representing Black Lives Matter. "We need to defund the police. This is absolutely not the way the city should behave."
At a news conference Monday, Moore announced the number of arrests from the previous day during mass protests over Floyd's death and police brutality. He noted that 10% of the 700 LAPD arrests were for burglary or looting.
"We didn't have protests last night, we had criminal acts," he said. "We didn't have people mourning the death of this man, George Floyd, we had people capitalizing. His death is on their hands as much as it is those officers."
He apologized minutes later, saying he "misspoke when I said his blood is on their hands" and that he regretted "that characterization."
Moore went on to say that he did not regret nor would he apologize to the people "committing violence, destroying lives and livelihoods and creating this destruction."
Of Floyd, he said, "His memory deserves reform. His memory deserves a better Los Angeles, a better United States and a better world."
On Monday night, he tweeted, "I misspoke when making a statement about those engaging in violent acts following the murder of George Floyd."
Around 11 p.m., Moore offered an official apology in which he said, "I recognize that my initial words were terribly offensive. Looting is wrong, but it is not the equivalent of murder and I did not mean to equate the two. I deeply regret and humbly apologize for my characterization. Let me be clear: the police officers involved were responsible for the death of Mr. George Floyd."