After a 29-year-old Chicago police officer was shot and killed during a traffic stop, the head of Chicago police union is calling out Democrat Mayor Lori Lightfoot for having "vilified" police and her recent pivot to support law enforcement is "too damn late."
"For 2 1/2 years that she's been mayor, she has vilified the police," Chicago Fraternal Order of Police President John Catanzara told Fox News on Monday, calling Lightfoot "a flag in the wind" and saying it is "disgusting" she had more "emotion" for rioters than a slain police officer.
"And now because the political climate says the defund policy and the police maybe aren't the enemy, now she has to pivot and now she has to be our best friend?
"It's too damn late."
Lightfoot was not entirely supportive of all police Sunday, calling some "flawed," after officer Ella French was killed in Chicago's South Side.
"The police are not our enemies," Lightfoot wrote in a statement, The Washington Free Beacon reported. "They are human, just as we are. Flawed, just as we are, but also risking their lives every day for our safety and security.
"This constant strife is not what we need in this moment. Of course, we have to continue the journey to achieve constitutional and accountable policing. That cannot be in debate at this point."
Catanzara suggested Lightfoot has been one of the forces fueling hostility toward police.
"The men and women of this police department have no respect for this mayor, and it was as palpable as you can possibly imagine outside that hospital at the University of Chicago two nights ago," Catanzara added to Fox News, referring to a crowd of police and supporters for French's partner, who was also shot and critically injured in the shooting during a traffic stop.
"Just a little back story: The mayor was told do not come up to the seventh floor of that hospital and speak to the family or the officer who was still injured, fighting for his life," Catanzara said.
"Yet, the mayor still thought she knew best and went up there against the advice of the family."
Catanzara noted the "officers father gave her a piece of his mind," saying "paraphrasing: there's blood on her hands."
"And the officers up there all turned their back on the mayor and rightly so," he continued. "It was the exclamation point to the sentiment that was outside on the street level."
As a candidate Lightfoot vowed to address the Chicago Police Department's "fraught relationship with minority communities, stemming from historical racism, decades of mistreatment, and unconstitutional and questionable policing practices," the Free Beacon reported.
Crime and violent shootings have raged in Chicago this summer, leaving 2,021 shooting victims year to date, 9% increase compared with the same time span last year and a more than 50% increase from 2019, the Chicago Tribune reported.
The police have three unnamed suspects in custody from the shooting, which reportedly featured an assailant shooting the officers from the backseat of the car, sources told CBS Chicago.
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