New Chief Says He Will Fire Officers For Excessive Force

Robert White Says Culture Of Department Will Change Under His Leadership

Denver's new top cop said he won't hesitate to fire any officer who exhibits unnecessary use of force.

Chief Robert White met with leaders of Denver's Latino community Monday evening.

Most said they are hoping this change in leadership is a turning point for the Denver Police Department which they believe has a systemic problem of police brutality and racial profiling.

"Officers will be held accountable for their behavior and when they're right, I will stand up and I will tell you that they're right. And when they're wrong, I will stand up and tell you that they were wrong," said White. "It is not their police department. This is your police department."

Julie Gonzales, organizing director of the Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition, is demanding transparency.

"Community trust has been broken, particularly for communities of color, for immigrant communities," she said.

The DPD has been plagued in recent years with cases of brutality, most notably the Michael Deherrera beating.

"Whenever appropriate and possible to speak up for the families, we have to... and we must," said Miriam Pena, Co-Executive Director of the Colorado Progressive Coalition.

White said it won't happen overnight, but the culture of the DPD will change under his leadership.

"You need to think before you make decisions. Not only does your action need to be legal, but was it really necessary? Was it a responsible thing to do?" he said.

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