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PALESTINE, June 13, 2014—Palestine Mayor Therrell Thomas and City Manager Wendy Ellis have issued the following statement regarding the current issues involving the Palestine Police Department and Police Chief Robert Herbert:
The city council, city manager, and police chief have already taken steps to address the needs and issues of our highly valued police officers. We have assured our officers that they are free to discuss all problems within the police department with city staff without any fear of retaliation. We will monitor that closely. The police chief has assured us that he will not retaliate against any officer, and the council, mayor, and city manager have made it clear that they will not tolerate any retaliation.
We will be diligent and conscientious in addressing all concerns. We will balance the needs and desires of the officers and staff with the needs and desires of the community to reach the best possible answers.
We were overwhelmed by the amount of information that came out in comments and discussions at the meeting on Monday, June 9 and needed time to sort through everything and establish the facts in the appropriate context. Another city council meeting will be held on Monday, June 16 at 5:30 p.m. in the Council Chambers to hear what measures have been taken to help our police officers. We will continue to closely monitor all actions to resolve outstanding problems.
We appreciate the great work our police force does to protect and serve Palestine. The city council, mayor, and city manager recognize the importance of listening to the problems within our police force and community and selecting an appropriate course of action to bring our community together. We all have the same goal of making this a better place to live.
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