On Tuesday, Hinds County Sheriff Lee Vance made an appearance on Mary Wieden and You to speak out about the egregious murder of George Floyd.
“The one word that keeps coming back to my mind is despicable. Just an absolutely despicable act of cowardice,” Vance said. “[Derek Chauvin] committed an act of murder. The thing that makes it even worse is you have at least three other police officers that were there, that are actually bound by law to intervene. Not only did [the video] show them commit an act of murder, but the other three were complicit, because they didn’t do anything to stop it, which they are obligated to do.”
As a former member of the Jackson Police Department, Vance perceives the Floyd murder as “a stain on all of us who carry our badge as proudly as we do.”
“I don’t claim idiotic, police behavior,” Vance said. “It’s unfair for a police officer in Atlanta, for instance, to be out there, trying to keep control of a violent rioting situation because of something that somebody in Minnesota did.”
Thus far, all protests in the state’s capital have been peaceful, and Vance commends protesters for practicing their civil rights without transforming the situation into one of violence.
“This gives me an opportunity to commend the demonstrators that we have seen in downtown Jackson,” Vance said. “They have been orderly. They have been peaceful, and I commend the organizers and the participants.”
To end his interview, Vance issued a three-point statement against future protests transforming into violent riots.
“Number one, we hope that the demonstrations remain peaceful. Number two, we have reached out to the appropriate authority that we need to be on the same page with, and number three, this is a day-by-day situation, but we are prepared to do the best we can to maintain law and order.”