Pastor Calls for Communication

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In the month since Pastor Lamorris Richardson of Love City Fellowship was mistakenly handcuffed and thrown into the back of a police car, he says he's received 50 phone calls and about 25 letters detailing similar incidents from others in the community.

"These are not criminals. These are members of the community who've never had a problem with the police department," said Richardson.

On Nov. 12, a member of Richardson's church had a car stolen from the church parking lot. After finding the car, police refused to process and fingerprint it.

When Richardson insisted they do so, he was cuffed and put into the police car for about 15 minutes. Richardson said the department has admitted they were wrong to do it, but he's yet to receive an apology.

"They've said they did something wrong, but they've yet to say they're sorry," said Richardson.

Richardson has called a community forum on Jan. 7 at 7:00 p.m. at Love City Fellowship to discuss the situation with others who've had similar problems with the department.

Police Chief Benny Dubose will be in attendance, and he says he hopes it will be a civil discussion.

"I'm not going to take part in something where I'm accusing you and you're accusing me," said Dubose. "It's going to be a chance to get information, as far as I'm concerned."

Dubose said the investigation into the Richardson matter is complete and it did reveal some procedural errors. But he says he doesn't believe it was a case of harassment or intimidation and he doesn't believe it will happen again.