FWPD Chief Addresses Concerns At Community Forum

Jim Burroway

July 1st, 2009

The Dallas Voice’s Tammye Nash attended Tuesday night’s community forum in Ft. Worth, Texas hosted by Ft. Worth Police Chief Jeffrey Halstead. Chief Halstead answered a number of questions from the audience about the Sunday morning’s raid on the Rainbow Lounge:

First: after the meeting had started, Chief Halstead announced that the director of the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission had just issued a statement acknowledging that Chad Gibson, who has been hospitalized with a head injury since the incident, was injured while in the custody of TABC agents.

Halstead, who only recently became police chief after moving to Ft. Worth from Phoenix, also announced that he wants to meet with LGBT leaders and will appoint an LGBT liaison. That leads me to believe that up until now, Ft. Worth hasn’t had one. If true, that would be a very disturbing condition for the nation’s seventeenth-ranked city, and one that I’m glad the Chief will correct. Halstead also announced that he intends to institute sensitivity training for the force’s officers, which would be another long-overdue reform for such a large police department.

John Graykoski

July 1st, 2009

Ok… I take back what I said about the Police Chief in Fort Worth. But now I’d like to know who called the shots for the TABC. Heads need to roll somewhere!!


July 1st, 2009

He wants to appoint an LGBT liaison, talk to LGBT leaders, and conduct sensitivity training?

Sounds to me like he knows FWPD crossed the line, or why would he be throwing so many bones?

Christopher Waldrop

July 1st, 2009

At least they’re finally acknowledging that mistakes were made. The earlier claims that Chad Gibson was hospitalized for alcohol poisoning was just ridiculous.

I hope to hear a more detailed report about the forum soon.


July 1st, 2009

This is just a smokescreen for not wanting to punish/fire police officers involved in this harassment case.

Ken in Riverside

July 1st, 2009

Police being immune from the rule of law damages their reputation and public esteem. It’s hard to argue with people who say they’re just criminals with a badge and a gun.


July 1st, 2009

Wow, sensitivity training. That hour long class is a completely suitable punishment for assaulting strangers and using the police force to terrorize people you hate.


July 1st, 2009

I think there are three things that need to happen:

1. a full and public investigation carried out by an organisation independent from FWPD & TABC.
2. suspension of all officers directly involved until the investigation is completed.
3. arrest and prosecution at the earliest opportunity of any officers guilty of assault.

Yes, they can probably claim they were only “following orders” – but it sounds to me like they were going WAY beyond orders. You wouldn’t put a paedophile in charge of a kindergarten, so you shouldn’t put thugs and barbarians in charge of public safety.


July 1st, 2009

Kinky Freedman once said that in Texas, a queer is somebody who likes girls more than football.


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