Mayor Pete Buttigieg talks to 16 Morning News about officer-involved shooting

Published: Jun. 19, 2019 at 7:59 AM EDT
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Mayor Pete Buttigieg joined Joshua Short and Tricia Sloma on 16 Morning News Wednesday to discuss Sunday’s officer-involved shooting in South Bend, protocol for officers and body cameras and the swearing-in ceremony for new police officers.

Mayor Buttigieg is taking time away from the campaign trail to address the shooting that killed 54-year-old Eric J. Logan. Sgt. Ryan O’Neill shot Logan in the parking lot of Central High Apartments shortly before 3:30 a.m. Sunday.

O’Neill reportedly told investigators Logan approached him with a knife when he responded to a call of a suspicious person potentially breaking into cars. O’Neill’s body camera was not recording when Logan was killed.

During his interview Wednesday, Buttigieg said he stepped away from the presidential campaign because the community is hurting.

“The community is a family,” Buttigieg said. “No matter what the details are, the legalities of it are, a member of this family has died at the hands of another member of this family. As mayor, I need to be here not only to help handle that, but also to make sure we’re going through the right steps as a community looking forward to come together to look at what we can do to prevent incidents in the future.”

“Making sure that Mr. Logan’s family is supported is very important to us right now,” the mayor told Tricia Sloma in response to her question asking if he has spoken with Logan’s family.

“The reason we introduce body cameras is so that in a moment like this, we can have as much information as possible on what happened,” Buttigieg said. “My first question when I heard this had happened was what’s going on with the body camera footage. I imagine that was the case for a lot of people, and so it’s extremely frustrating that we don’t have, apparently, footage of the moment when this happened.”

On Tuesday, Buttigieg asked South Bend Police Chief Scott Ruszkowski to issue the following general order:
“Officers should activate their body cameras during all work-related interactions with civilians. This Order reminds all personnel of our Body Camera Activation Policy #424.6 and the expectation that all enforcement and investigative contacts, traffic stops (including back-up), field interviews, and self-initiated contacts shall be recorded. This includes non-emergency call responses and any time there is civilian contact in relation to a complaint."