Tulsa Police Chief Chuck Jordan this week defended his department after it took up a collection for Darren Wilson, the Ferguson, Missouri officer who killed unarmed teen Michael Brown.
In a statement obtained by Tulsa World, Jordan noted that members of the media had inquired about a collection jar for Wilson’s “legal fund” that was placed at the Tulsa Police Department’s Gilcrease Division.
“I think it is important to point out a few facts. First, our officers have proven their dedication and service to ALL of our community and will continue to do so with respect and compassion,” he explained. “I expect no less of them. Second, their support is not about race, guilt or innocence it is about the rule of law.”
Jordan said that because of an “intense atmosphere” in Ferguson, public figures were “insinuating Officer Wilson’s guilt before the investigation is over, thereby tainting potential jury pools in the event a trial is warranted.”
And “relevant facts are being overlooked and facts not in evidence are being broadcast as the truth,” he argued.
“I don’t know if Officer Wilson is guilty or innocent of the charges being leveled at him,” the chief added. “And neither does anyone else at this point.”
Jordan asserted that Tulsa officers had never taken up collections for local law enforcement before because “they saw due process was in place and the rule of law would prevail.”
“While collection boxes in City facilities may not be appropriate, the desire to seek justice in a just manner certainly is,” he concluded.
At Jordan’s order, the collection jars were removed on Saturday.
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