© 2022
Virginia's Public Radio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations

Former Police Chief Demands $3 Million

RaShall Brackney was fired in early September after a survey by the Police Benevolent Association suggested many officers lacked confidence in their leader, and 18 had left the force in the past year.

Brackney.jpg
Charlottesville Police
/
Former Charlottesville police chief RaShall Brackney

During a press conference outside city hall, Brackney said she lost her job for cracking down on police violence and white supremacy.

“No longer can they respond with force to those demanding justice for black and brown men – people of color who have died or suffered from police violence. For doing what is right," she told supporters and reporters. "For doing what is just, my professional reputation has been diminished.“

And she predicted future leaders would find it impossible to hold bad cops accountable.

“This approach will have a chilling effect on any employee or any citizen demanding accountability. If you have the audacity of being black, the audacity of being a woman, the audacity of being qualified, competent and professional, the audacity of being an educated black woman in Charlottesville. The city’s response to my actions to rooting out supremacy, to police violence – they sent a very clear message, a message that proclaims that the good-old-boys’ system of patronage and insularity is alive and well in Charlottesville."

Former city manager Chip Boyles said he felt problems in the police department were growing out of control and decided to fire Brackney before the department was gripped by chaos.

She is now filing a complaint with the federal government for wrongful termination and demanding the city pay her $3 million in damages.

Sandy Hausman joined our news team in 2008 after honing her radio skills in Chicago. Since then, she's won several national awards for her reporting from the Society of Professional Journalists, the Society of Environmental Journalists, the Radio, Television and Digital News Association and the Public Radio News Directors' Association.