"Baton Rouge, I get what's going on," Police Chief Murphy Paul says. "I've had the experience as a black boy and as a black man."
Paul shared publicly how he has been racially profiled and the victim of police misconduct while growing up in New Orleans.
Now, as a veteran of Louisiana State Police and chief in Baton Rouge since 2017, we appreciate his viewpoint of respect for the vast majority of officers who are, as he said, true public servants.
But he’s also come under fire for changes underway at BRPD. These have included body cameras and changes in use-of-force policies. Officers whose actions are called into question have seen disciplinary hearings, though rarely do these incidents rise to public attention.
No true and lasting reforms are going to occur overnight but with Paul and East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff Sid Gautreaux, we see signs of progress in local agencies.
Reform is a process, not a destination, as Gautreaux said in a statement: ''I pray that as a community and as a nation we will continue to come together and listen to each other with compassion.''
Amen to that.