The following is a statement issued by Sheriff-elect Jim McDonnell follow a Grand Jury's decision to not take any action regarding the police shooting.
The frustration we have seen in Ferguson, Missouri demonstrates what can happen when a divide develops between government -- through one of its most vital agents, law enforcement -- and the community it serves. It is why community policing and engagement must not merely be something we do, but rather it must be who we are and how we operate every day.
The Grand Jury in Ferguson, Missouri has spoken. Yet a community is still fractured and many lives are forever and irreparably impacted.
I urge those who may be disappointed by today’s decision to nonetheless respect the outcome and processes of our legal system. The greatness of our nation comes from our ability to come together peacefully and lawfully, to speak up about what is on our minds, and to respect one another.
I have great confidence that the residents of Los Angeles County will maintain calm and abide by the law in the coming days. I also have great faith that our communities, leaders and law enforcement will work together to ensure order and foster mutual respect.
As the incoming Sheriff of Los Angeles County, I will continue to focus, as I have throughout my career, on strengthening lines of communication and fortifying trust between communities and law enforcement. I will also work to ensure that those who protect our community are supported and safe in the difficult job that they carry out. We must be accountable to those we protect and serve and continue to partner with our community in performing the ever-challenging job of law enforcement; that is how policing best maintains the safety and well-being of our entire community.