Board Chair Tootie Smith began the April 21 meeting of Clackamas County commissioners by commenting on the conviction of former police officer Derek Chauvin in the murder of George Floyd.
Smith joined public officials in Clackamas County and across the state and nation committing to justice for all people.
"There was a decision that came down yesterday that has impacted America. It just shows that our justice system is provided accountability when it's needed, and we here at Clackamas County will continue our good work along those lines for justice, public safety and the preservation of freedom," Smith said.
Commissioner Sonya Fischer then read a statement by Clackamas County Sheriff Angela Brandenburg announcing solidarity with the community as it processes the events that led to this trial and verdict.
"Today's verdict confirms we have a justice system that will hold law enforcement officers accountable for their actions," Brandenburg wrote. "No one is above the law. The many good men and women who wear their badge with honor, integrity and compassion stand with our communities, with ache in our hearts and a deep understanding that words are not enough. As your sheriff, I am committed to strengthening relationships with the communities we serve through training, transparency and accountability."
On Thursday, April 22, Fischer also read a memo issued by County Administrator Gary Schmidt to all county staff members in which he recognized that staff are experiencing a variety of feelings and that he stands in solidarity with them. He urged the county and its residents to continue building community.
"While Tuesday's verdict brought closure to this specific case, we still have more work to do to continue to build towards racial equity," Schmidt wrote. "While this trial is over, and many people are feeling resolution, we still have more work to do, both as a nation and as a county. It is the responsibility of all of us to continue this important work daily. Thank you to everyone who has been doing this work every day and continues to do so."
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