Councilwoman LaWana Mayfield fires back at critics of tweet comparing police to terrorists
CHARLOTTE, NC (FOX 46 WJZY) - Charlotte city councilwoman Lawana Mayfield is not backing down on her Twitter comment comparing police to terrorists, and took to Twitter Thursday afternoon to defend herself and share other thoughts on the matter of police brutality.
Mayfield spoke briefly with FOX 46 Charlotte on Wednesday after a comment she made in March on a deadly officer-involved shooting in Sacramento resurfaced. She immediately began receiving flack for using the term "terrorist" and "blue uniforms" in the same sentence.
Sending another with with the dictionary definition of "terrorist," saying she has "defended good officers," and "will not turn a blind eye to bad ones."
Mayfield's divisive comments sparked controversy in the Queen City, and garnered reactions from the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department and the Fraternal Order of Police.
CMPD Officer and President of the Fraternal Order of Police Mark Michalec said he was "infuriated," and "angry, to put it politely," when he read Mayfield's tweet.
"I'm completely dumbfounded, that's why I'm asking for an explanation," Michalec said.
CMPD is in the middle of asking for raises from the city, and they're trying to recruit new officers. Charlotte City Council has to approve the budget that would include the raises for police.
"This is a tough week for us already, said CMPD Police Chief Kerr Putney. "It's hard for us to recruit, it's hard for us to retain, and then it;s almost hypocritical to say we want you to be diverse, and then you lay a wrong allegation and paint us all with a broad brush."
Some are calling for Mayfield's resignation. Michalec says the The Fraternal Order of Police has not yet decided if they will ask for her resignation, but they have invited her to a meeting to give her an opportunity to explain where she's coming from.
Some current CMPD officers have reached out to FOX 46 to express their outrage. One officer sent this email saying in part:
"I hope she finds the help she needs. I hope maybe one day she'll do what she was elected to do which was to help people, represent the city as a respectable leader, and create a safe, enjoyable and affordable city to live in."