Ferguson police chief quits after racism report

Washington: Ferguson police chief Tom Jackson resigned on Wednesday, after a federal report pointed out a culture of racism within the police department and municipal offices in the US city, according to media reports.

Jackson said that he felt it was time for the city to move on and said that an interim chief would be appointed from within the department, Xinhua reported. He said in his resignation letter that it was an honour and a privilege to serve Ferguson and its people, adding that he would continue to assist the city as a private citizen.


Ferguson Mayor James Knowles speaks to the media during a press conference at the Ferguson City Hall and Municipal Court Building on March11, 2015 in Ferguson, Missouri. The press conference was held to announce the resignation of Ferguson Police Chief Tom Jackson and discuss the future of the embattled community. Pic/ AFP

Ferguson, a city in the US state of Missouri, has been at the centre of racial tensions across the US since Darren Wilson, a white police officer, shot dead an unarmed black youth Michael Brown, last August. There have been protests in the US after many black men were killed by the police last year.

A department of justice (DOJ) report released a week earlier found systematic racism within the Ferguson Police Department. US Attorney General Eric Holder warned last week that the DOJ reserved the right to force an immediate change in Ferguson policing and court practices.

The justice department last week presented the conclusions of a report, according to which, over the past two years, African-Americans living in Ferguson, and making up 67 percent of the population there, were the targets of 85 percent of the traffic stops, 93 percent of the arrests and 88 percent of the cases in which police used force. US President Barack Obama said on Saturday that the fight against racism in the US was not yet over.

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