(Miami Gardens, FL) – One day after the Florida State Conference of NAACP branches and its Miami-Dade County Branch asked Attorney General Eric Holder to direct the Justice Department to review the practice of intimidation by officers of the Miami Gardens Police Department against African American residents, Miami Gardens Police Chief Matthew Boyd resigned amid allegations that officers in his department have systematically committed civil rights violations against residents of city.
“The Miami Gardens community deserves a police department that is committed to stopping crime and preserving justice,” stated Adora Obi Nweze, President of the NAACP Florida State Conference. “This is a good first step toward that goal, but hardly the last step. The systematic allegations of police intimidation did not happen because of just one person; they were the result of a sustained lack of oversight. We hope that the Miami Gardens Police Department will continue to work with the community on a fairer and more just system.”
Many Miami Gardens residents have faced harassment and misconduct carried out by the Miami Gardens Police Department, related to a program called the Zero Tolerance Zone Initiative. Public records contain 27 video recordings from one store owner, Alex Saleh, who also filed a complaint with internal affairs. The recordings show police regularly questioning, frisking, and arresting people who not only have permission to be on the property, but also have not committed any crimes.