LGBTQ community voices concerns with Charleston Police during to - Live5News.com | Charleston, SC | News, Weather, Sports

LGBTQ community voices concerns with Charleston Police during town hall

Charleston police chief Luther Reynolds speaks at the town hall on Tuesday night (Source: Live 5) Charleston police chief Luther Reynolds speaks at the town hall on Tuesday night (Source: Live 5)

The Alliance for Full Acceptance partnered with the Charleston Police Department to hold a town hall event Tuesday night to discuss LGBTQ issues following the assault of a transgender woman in downtown Charleston.

Representatives from the police department attended to hear the concerns and recommendations of the LGBTQ community and how Charleston can become a safer and more welcoming place. 

"When there is an attack on a transgender person in the community, it contributes to an overall climate of fear for all LGBTQ people in the community," Alliance for Full Acceptance Executive Director Chase Glenn said. "Right now, there are members of our community who need to hear that they can trust our local law enforcement. We believe that increased dialogue and conversation is a way to strengthen our community. This town hall is a step toward more open communication, education and trust building between the Charleston Police Department and the LGBTQ community they serve here in Charleston."

Several people who attended the meeting addressed concerns with how the Charleston Police Department handled the incident. Several people were frustrated with how police initially said the assault had nothing to do with the woman's gender, but later said otherwise.

“When I got the incident report, there was nothing in there that said she was a transgender,"  Charleston Police Department's public information officer Charles Francis said. 

Charleston Police Chief Luther Reynolds also spoke about how the department handled the case and how the initial press release about this incident was worded.

“There was some wording in the press release which was offensive which was not well received and not as well worded as it should have been and we’re going to own that," Reynolds said.

The people who came to the town hall offered several suggestions for the department to consider.

Many people walked away saying this was a step in the right direction.

“Our hope is that we will shine light on issues that are happening and give us some insight into ways which we can address issues," Glenn said.

Representatives from the department said they will have several training sessions in the next few weeks for officers about how to improve their interactions with people in the LGBTQ community.

The event lasted from 7 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. at the Arthur W. Christopher Community Center located at 265 Fishburne Street. 

Copyright 2018 WCSC.All rights reserved. 

Powered by Frankly