Reforming Chicago police? Charles Ramsey to the rescue
Former Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles H. Ramsey has landed a gig in his native Chicago where he will consult its embattled police department on civil rights reform.
“Commissioner Ramsey is a not only a national leader in urban policing who has led two major police departments through civil rights reforms — he is also a native Chicagoan who knows our police department and our communities," Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said in a statement.
The Chicago Police Department (CPD) came under intense scrutiny following the release of a dashcam video showing one of its officers, Jason Van Dyke (a white man) fatally shooting 17-year-old Laquan McDonald (an African American) back in 2014. Amid national backlash, the Justice Department launched a civil rights investigation into the department's practices.
Ramsey will be paid $350 an hour for his consulting duties, which will extend into “the foreseeable future,” the CPD said. This is the third job Ramsey has taken since he ended his seven-year stint in Philadelphia last December, where his performance was widely praised.
Two weeks ago, Ramsey was hired to consult the Wilmington Police Department on its public safety analysis and strategy development. The former top cop also signed a two-year contract with Drexel University as a guest lecturer and advisor with the school's criminal justice department.
Of all these positions, his work in Chicago carries the most pressure.
"There is a sense of urgency,” Ramsey told USA Today in a phone interview Sunday. “They [the Emanuel administration] know there has got to be some positive movement now."