Entire SWAT Team Resigns, Blames Police Chief Kneeling With Protesters
All members of the Hallandale Beach Police Department SWAT team quit their job in protest on Friday. In their resignation letter the group pointing to their Police Chief Sonia Quinones kneeling with protesters while they were unequipped to handle their job.
In the resignation letter received by City Manager Greg Chavarria, the team stated that the team was, “minimally equipped, under-trained and often times restrained by the politicization of our tactics.” The letter also blasts Vice-Mayor Sabrina Javellana for making “ignorant and inaccurate statements attacking the lawful actions” and “having the gall to compare us to the Minneapolis Police Department.”
They went on to accuse their Police Chief of “taking a knee in solidarity” on behalf of Javellana’s activist friends. They made this connection due to the protesters chanting, “Howard Bowe, reopen the case, State Attorney, reopen the case.” The alleged chant is in reference to a Swat team home raid of a 34-year-old man who was shot. He died 11 days later. The family sued in federal court over the fact that the SWAT team killed the family dog and failed to knock before entering which was mandated by the warrant. The family was awarded $425,000 by the city. The South Florida Sun-Sentinel reported the family was also promised by the cops that “they don’t use military-style raids for minor drug investigations anymore.” No officers were prosecuted in the aftermath.
Chavarria pointed out that the officers only quit the SWAT team and are still apart of the police department. He guaranteed that the city will continue to have special weapons protection despite losing the entire time. Chavarria also had this to say to CBS 12 News about Quinones kneeling, “They specifically mention their displeasure with the Chief joining members of our community in taking a knee against racism, hatred, and intolerance earlier this week. They have incorrectly stated the gesture was in support of an elected official. This is simply not true.”