Cathedral City Mayor’s Award Bestowed upon Police Chief George Crum

CATHEDRAL CITY — One year to the day that George Floyd was murdered at the hands of police, a death captured on a gut-wrenching bystander video, this community’s police chief received the Mayor’s Award for the work he did and actions he took in the aftermath.

Police Chief George Crum received the coveted award during the Cathedral City State of the City on Tuesday.

In his first State of the City, Mayor Raymond Gregory lamented that this past year not only brought forth a devastating pandemic, the kind not seen in more than a hundred years, but it also brought about the social reawakening concerning racial inequalities still present in American society and a renewed desire to address them.

“One of the most tragic examples of this pervasive injustice was the death of Minneapolis resident, George Floyd, who lost his life due to the excessive use of force by a police officer one year ago today,” Gregory said.

The death of Mr. Floyd was just one more recent example of the unequal treatment many people of color experience that focus the spotlight on local law enforcement, the very same profession that is empowered to serve and protect the American people., Gregory said. Floyd’s deaths spurred massive protests around the world, including the Coachella Valley and even here in Cathedral City. And these protests were directed at our city.

“Our honoree showed courage in his willingness to engage, listen, and take a hard look at his department and profession, and then take affirmative steps to make change,” Gregory said. “Not only did our honoree lead a group of representatives from his organization to attend the protest, but he listened to what was being said. Heard their anger, understood their outrage, and shared with them his commitment to make policing better. His words to the protestors and the greater community did not ring hollow. Four days later, he banned locally one of the most controversial uses of force, called the carotid chokehold, and was one of the leaders in this change in Riverside County and throughout California.

Within the next several months, Police Chief Crum continued to engage in discussion culminating in a virtual study session workshop in which he reassured the community that he had reviewed the city’s current methods regarding use of force and eliminated any that would put our city in a precarious situation similar to what had been seen throughout our nation, Gregory said.

“Our honoree is committed to doing his part to continue to address inequality and ensuring his department reflects the values of our community,” Gregory said. “This is a man that says what he means and means what he says. Therefore, it is my privilege and honor to award the 2021 Mayor’s Award to Cathedral City Police Chief George Crum. Chief Crum, congratulations for a job well done.”

In thanking the mayor, Crum said, “It’s truly an honor and privilege to receive this award from you. It’s truly an honor to serve the city and accept this award on behalf of our Cathedral City Police Department. We truly take pride in service and making sure that our community visitors and businesses are treated fairly and compassionately as we continue to police this great city. “

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  • Police Chief George Crum and Mayor Raymond Gregory: