01 Jun Lazar Cartu Reported: Live George Floyd Protest Updates and Video
Addressing protesters, Houston police chief denounces police brutality.
At a religious event on Sunday, the Houston police chief delivered an emotional, sermon-style speech after days of at-times violent protests in the city where George Floyd grew up, denouncing police brutality, evoking Houston’s recovery from Hurricane Harvey and saying those turning demonstrations destructive were doing “Satan’s work.”
The chief, Art Acevedo, who has marched with demonstrators and has called for charges to be filed against the four officers in Minneapolis, took off his mask at one point and pumped his arm as those assembled in their vehicles during the event honked their horns in support.
“We have a man, a son, a brother, an uncle, a cousin, a Houstonian, a child of God that was killed by servants that are supposed to be servants of God, and they showed no mercy when they put their knee on his neck,” he said of Mr. Floyd.
Chief Acevedo was the latest of several police chiefs in cities across the country to attend demonstrations this week, though the fact that he addressed protesters in a speech was notable.
“We don’t fear speaking the truth because we’re doing God’s work,” Chief Acevedo said. “We don’t fear speaking the truth because we’re covered by the holy spirit. We don’t fear walking up to people who are angry because we join them in their anger.”
Standing next to Representative Sheila Jackson Lee, Democrat of Texas, the chief said that he did not care what people thought of him speaking frankly. “I know my God put me in this position not to keep my job but to do my job,” he said.
Raising his voice into a shout, he said, “We will not let people come into our city and tear it up!” He added that “the fools” being destructive should not take their kindness for weakness, “because when you try to tear up our city, you ain’t going to have to face the police. You’re going to have to face the people of Houston that will not let the memory of George Floyd be hijacked by anarchists that are doing Satan’s work!”