Miami Gardens Police Chief Resigns After NAACP Outcry Over Racial Profiling, Bullying

Categories: News

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Deputy Police Chief Paul Miller will take over for the department now that Matthew Boyd has resigned amid scandal.
Just two days after the NAACP said the Miami Gardens Police Department might be committing "the most pervasive, most invasive, and most unjustified pattern of police harassment in the nation," the city's police chief has resigned.

Matthew Boyd was the first and only person to lead the force, which was formed in 2007. The officers have been accused of racially profiling both customers and employees at a local convenience store that was participating in a "zero tolerance" program meant to reduce crime by aggressively targeting suspicious-looking people. Store owner Alex Saleh got much more than he bargained for when he agreed to participate in the program. Perhaps most egregiously: One employee of the Quickstop 207, Earl Sampson, was arrested 419 times for trespassing in the past five years, according to city records.

In response, Saleh installed 15 video cameras to record the routine harassment and to call into question how somebody can be trespassing while they're at work. After the Miami Herald released some of his footage last month of cops manhandling elderly patrons and illegally searching the premises, it became national news reported by media outlets such as NPR and MSNBC.

Despite the national outrage, Boyd was quick to defend his police officers. He cited Miami Gardens' zero-tolerance policy and its high crime rate, which is indeed among the highest in the county. (Last year the area saw 25 murders, 16 forcible rapes, and 369 robberies, according to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.) Still, Quickstop 207 has never been robbed once in the 17 years that Saleh has owned the store.

The State Attorney's Office looked into complaints about the policy last year and uncovered no wrongdoing. Now the NAACP is calling for an investigation by Attorney General Eric Holder. "Absent federal oversight, and intervention, the NAACP has no confidence that the Miami Gardens Police Department or other city officials will willingly conduct a complete and impartial investigation," the organization said in a news release. The MGPD is undergoing its own internal affairs investigation.

"Were going to be very transparent in our process," interim police chief Paul Miller said in his first public statement last night. Miller then refused to comment on any details of the "very transparent" internal affairs investigation.

Send your story tips to the author, Allie Conti.

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13 comments
Patricia L Watt
Patricia L Watt

I feel safe riding my bike now, but still won't wear anything some A-hole may want. Unless a punch in the fucking face. Thank you police chief. It was a jungle out there with a observable change in the public safety. No longer thugs in crack house's rule this town. Sad to see him go. P.S glad he was not "white" or else there would be hell to pay & more. People fed up to their eye balls with being robed and what everr. NAACP should go fuck themselves, & have by using that fat, now skinny reverse biggot Alfred Charles Sharpton

sinbadsailor99
sinbadsailor99

Saleh owns the Quick Stop business, but he is just leasing space. I wonder what the owner of the parking lot and the other tenant (a laundromat) thinks about his loitering employee. From what I could see, the employee appears to run inside and pretend to work whenever he is about to be apprehended.

MiamiBeachCrack
MiamiBeachCrack

Very fine line between Miami area police unions and organized crime.   Residents should vote to abolish police unions.  Only way this is going to change. 

Ribo Selarom
Ribo Selarom

It must be hard to be fair when half the population fits the description of all the shootings... Just saying.

Ribo Selarom
Ribo Selarom

I definitely feel you but who is it that is popping off their guns at all hours of then night in Miami Gardens? I live here and see and heard the violence first hand.

Eric Puntervold
Eric Puntervold

Maybe the Miami Gardens community would rather the cops just sit back and let the daily murders and rapes continue.. it's been bad lately

Ace Greene
Ace Greene

The possessive form of Miami Gardens is "Miami Gardens'," not "Miami Garden's."

Meesh Kachian
Meesh Kachian

a bunch of criminals. why federal government is not raiding these organized terror cells that terrorize taxpayers for decades?! most of these south florida's small towns have unconstitutional ordinances and do whatever they want...

Steve Klare
Steve Klare

This ought to be interesting to follow..

Jen Die
Jen Die

In the nation? Mmmmmm LAPD & NYPD might disagree

Missy Ibarra
Missy Ibarra

I can't imagine it's worse than New York's bullshit "Stop & Frisk" law but good riddance just the same.

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