RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) – A new court filing reveals Mayor Levar Stoney’s side of the story as to why William “Jody” Blackwell stepped down as the interim police chief.
Blackwell stepped down after just 11 days in 2020. Stoney claims public outcry over a 2002 shooting in which Blackwell fatally shot a man while working as a police officer in the city led to Blackwell stepping down as chief.
Stoney said he was aware of the shooting before naming Blackwell interim chief, but still believed he was the right man for the job.
After his resignation, Stoney said that he and Blackwell agreed he would return to his former position as Major.
Blackwell is currently suing Stoney and current police chief Gerald Smith for wrongful termination.
A grand jury heard evidence and Blackwell wasn’t charged in the shooting, but there were questions over Stoney’s decision to have Blackwell serve as chief during racial justice protests in Richmond in the summer of 2020.
There are still a lot of questions surrounding why current chief Gerald Smith was hired so quickly.
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