Officials respond to firing of officer involved in shooting death of Alton Sterling

Updated: Mar. 30, 2018 at 8:39 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - The officer who fired the shots that killed Alton Sterling has been fired, Baton Rouge Police Chief Murphy Paul confirmed Friday.

Paul said Officer Blane Salamoni violated use of force policies as well as policies related to command of temper. Officer Salamoni was notified of his termination Friday afternoon.

Officer Howie Lake has been suspended for three days. "That is my decision. That is the right decision," Paul said.

RELATED: BRPD's Blane Salamoni fired; other officer suspended

Many officials have started responding, releasing statements on Chief Paul's decision. The statements can be found below.

Governor John Bel Edwards released the following statement:

Our hearts go out to the Sterling family, particularly Alton's children, and to the entire Baton Rouge community. Once again, we have all been forced to relive that painful day. As I have said before, the video is disturbing. This process has been long, but now is the time for us to continue to come together and to heal as a state and community. I pray every day that Louisiana can work to strengthen the bonds that unite us, rather than focus on the things that divide us. While it may be difficult at times, it is the best way we can remember Alton and honor the brave men we lost in the summer of 2016: Brad Garafola, Matthew Gerald, and Montrell Jackson. 'Don't let hate infect your heart.' Those were the words of Officer Jackson in 2016 and they still ring true today.

East Baton Rouge Mayor President Sharon Weston Broome released this statement:

Today, Baton Rouge Police Chief Murphy Paul concluded his administrative investigation and has made a decision in the Alton Sterling case.

I have placed my trust in Chief Paul and fully support his decision. I am grateful for his leadership and his swift, decisive, and fair action on this matter.

Although the investigations into this case have concluded, the dialogue does not end today. I pledge to continue to lead and facilitate respectful conversations between the community and law enforcement in an effort to build trust and understanding on both sides.

The backdrop of this Holy Weekend serves as an opportunity for our community to move toward collective healing.

While support and prayers for the Sterling family are encouraged, we know that these alone will not heal their family or our community. It is vital that lessons are learned from this tragedy and that we apply our knowledge to prevent future incidents and implement policies that make this community safer and more unified.

Baton Rouge Union of Police, Local #237 released this statement:

The Baton Rouge Union of Police has had the opportunity to view the evidence in the officer-involved shooting of Alton Sterling. We publically stand behind and support Officer Blane Salamoni and Officer Howie Lake. Our Police Officers are faced with many complicated and highly intense situations. Accuracy gives real perspective. We look forward to a fair and impartial hearing with the Municipal Fire and Police Civil Service Board.


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