TEMPLE, Texas — In a statement released by the Temple City Council Thursday, Mayor Tim Davis said he wanted to address the officer-involved shooting that took place on Dec. 2.
Mayor Davis said he wanted to address the 'human aspect' of what happened.
"I am a father of three. Jennifer and I have built our life around our children. We have rejoiced in their accomplishments and wiped tears in their failures. Psalms 127 says that children are 'Like arrows in the hands of a warrior…blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them,'” Mayor Davis said in the press release.
"Many of our Council members are mothers and fathers, grandmothers and grandfathers. We know the loss of Michael is something from which the Dean family will never fully recover. The Deans have lost a son and a brother. His children have lost their father. They must go on without their loved one."
"As the Temple community, it is our responsibility to reach out to love them and support them in any way we can. We hope you will lift them up daily," Mayor Davis said.
"There is also a human toll on our police department as well as the officer involved. These men and women of all races and ethnicities work together to ensure the safety and security of our community. They have continued to uphold the integrity of the department while facing intense public scrutiny."
The statement also said that all decisions have been made in the pursuit of one goal, to ensure the investigation remained impartial and unbiased.
"It has been suggested this situation would have been handled differently if the victim was my son or another white member of the community. I can tell you, the system we have in place would not allow that to happen. All are treated equally in our pursuit of the truth," Mayor Davis said. "We hope there can be a true community conversation as we move forward together after this tragedy.”
On Thursday at 9:35 p.m another press release was sent regarding a statement from City Manager Brynn Myers.
"I am deeply saddened by the loss of Mr. Dean and I understand the family and the community want and need to have information and answers to their questions. The City wants the same thing," Myers said in the statement. "The criminal investigation process is currently underway, and I know the Texas Rangers are working hard to ensure a thorough investigation is completed as soon as possible."
Myers said the wait for forensic results could take "Weeks or even months." After the Texas Rangers complete their investigation, Myers said the results will be presented to the Bell County Grand Jury for review and consideration.
"Because the Temple Police Department is not conducting the investigation, they do not have many facts to disclose. Disclosure of incomplete information often leads to speculation which can result in inaccurate conclusions among the public, including potential jurors. This can unfairly skew the public’s perception of the person who died or the officer who was involved," Myers said. "The public interest is best served when facts lead the way. That is why this case was turned over to an independent investigating agency in order to determine those facts."
Myers also said, "I have previously told the City Council as well as residents of Temple that the Texas Rangers directed the City and the Temple Police Department not to release any information while their investigation was ongoing. That was what I understood the direction of the Rangers to be at the time."
Myers said earlier Thursday afternoon, he was shown a quote from Sgt. Bryan Washko, Public Information Officer for the Texas Rangers that said, "The Temple Police Department is not disclosing any information in regards to the open Texas Ranger investigation involving their officer, not at the request of the Texas Rangers, but at their own discretion not to jeopardize the ongoing open investigation."
Myers said, "Based on this statement, and at my request, the Temple Police Department spoke to the Texas Rangers today and clarified the original direction given regarding the release of information. While the Texas Rangers did not explicitly prohibit the City from releasing facts related to the case, it was clear they preferred we follow standard procedures by not releasing information related to an investigation being conducted by an outside agency. Therefore, we will continue to defer to the Texas Rangers as the investigating agency."
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