CALHOUN COUNTY, Mich. — Calhoun County Sheriff Steve Hinkley said he had no words to describe what he and other law enforcement officers felt when they saw the death of George Floyd.
“Disappointed isn’t even the word. I can't even think of the word I could use when we saw this,” Sheriff Hinkley said in a Zoom interview with FOX 17 on Thursday. “Most of these police officers are good police officers who understand and they want to build a community.”
Sheriff Hinkley is a part of the Michigan Sheriff’s Association, a group that released a statement this week stating that they ‘condemn the actions that led to Floyd’s death at the hands of the Minneapolis police officers.’
The letter also stated what the MPD officers did to Floyd ‘degraded, disparaged, discredited our profession.’
“I really think that law enforcement is a part of the fabric of the community and the community is a part of the fabric of the police department,” Sheriff Hinkley said. “We need each other we need to trust each other and we need to work together.”
The letter also reiterated that the 83 elected sheriffs in the MSA will do their jobs professionally, respectfully and honestly.
Sheriff Hinkley said ‘community policing’ is what they’ve been doing for years. He believes that the best way to move forward is through building trust with the communities law enforcement serves.
“I think everyone’s voice needs to be heard. I think we need to make sure that everyone is at the table to make the decisions because let’s face it, there are dangerous people out there that law enforcement has to deal with,” Sheriff Hinkley said. “We need the support of our community when we’re dealing with that.”