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Rochester police chief retires in the aftermath of Daniel Prude’s death

Deputy Chiefs Joseph Morabito and Mark Simmons announced their retirements as well.

La’Ron Singletary News10NBC

The chief police of the Rochester Police Department has announced his retirement days after the tragic death of Daniel Prude became public.

La’Ron Singletary, who recently celebrated 20 years of service, revealed the news in a retirement letter.

“For the past two decades, I have served this community with honor, pride, and the highest integrity,” Singletary wrote. “As a man of integrity, I will not sit idly by while outside entities attempt to destroy my character.”

He continued, “The events over the past week are an attempt to destroy my character and integrity. The members of the Rochester Police Department and the Greater Rochester Community know my reputation and know what I stand for. The mischaracterization and the politicization of the actions that I took after being informed of Mr. Prude’s death is not based on facts and is not what I stand for.”

Singletary has been criticized for the way he has handled the death of Prude, who died of asphyxiation after police officers covered his head with a “spit hood” and suffocated him for two minutes.

Following the incident that occurred in March, Singletary did not inform Mayor Lovely Warren. In April, the police department said that the officers’ actions were “appropriate and consistent with their training.” When Warren learned of the news in August, Singletary told her that it was a drug overdose.

Protests demanding justice for Prude and calling for the resignation of Singletary and the involved officers ensued.

Mayor Warren has since suspended all seven officers involved in Prude’s death and has expressed her disappointment with Singletary’s failure to make her aware of the tragic occurrence. New York Attorney General Letitia James is also set to form a grand jury that will help investigate the police killing of Prude.

Deputy Chiefs Joseph Morabito and Mark Simmons also announced that they are retiring.

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