Memphis City Council to vote on C.J. Davis reappointment

MEMPHIS, Tenn. —  The Memphis City Council is expected to decide Tuesday whether police chief C.J. Davis gets to keep her job when they vote on her reappointment by Mayor Paul Young.

Two weeks ago, some council members questioned Davis’ leadership when 7 out of 13 council members voted for a negative recommendation, and six councilmembers voted for a favorable recommendation.

Council woman Jerri Green says a change in leadership might be needed, while the Memphis NAACP says Chief Davis deserves more time.

C.J. Davis reappointment fails in Memphis City Council committee vote

“We’ve been in the national spotlight for horrendous things like the case of Tyre Nichols, facing a DOJ investigation, multiple lawsuits that are in the billions of dollars,” Green said. “We’re seeing police officers being decertified. There are reports of recruitments taking place in Puerto Rico and spending $50,000 on that and getting nobody to come back.”

But the Memphis NAACP, which is supporting Davis, says many of the city’s problems pre-date her arrival.

“Once we (NAACP) voted, we decided Chief Davis was the right person for this position to help with the crime issues here in Memphis and we all know Memphis had a lot of issues, major problems going on with the police department before Chief Davis got here,” said Vickie Terry, executive director.

The police beating of Tyre Nichols happened while Davis was police chief. But Terry says Davis has provided leadership.

“Let’s go back to Tyre Nichols, if Chief Davis had not acted as swiftly as she did with the firing of those officers, think about those officers who could still be on administrative leave or still on the payroll if it had not been for her,” Terry said. “So, we just wanted to make sure that we gave her a chance and we want the community to give her a chance.”

But now some community activists and elected leaders appear divided.

“It just doesn’t seem like in good faith after knocking on all of those doors and hearing people say we want a change, we can continue with what we’ve seen,” Green said.

WREG reached out to several council members on Monday, but many didn’t respond to our emails and phone calls.

Monday, members of the Memphis Police Association — a union representing police officers — met with Mayor Paul Young at Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church.

“The MPA coordinated this meeting as a forum for their members to be heard by – and to hear from – Mayor Young,” a City Hall spokesperson said. “The meeting went well and he greatly appreciated the depth and candor of the dialogue; he looks forward to this being the beginning of regular and ongoing communication with the officers who serve in our MPD.”

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