Last week, Pasadena Police Chief Phillip Sanchez announced his retirement in the midst of controversies related to the police department he served for in eight years. Such controversies include the one that involves two Pasadena police officers caught hitting a black man.
In a statement, Sanchez said that his resignation effective on April 18 took him “much deliberation and careful thought.”
“Putting on the Pasadena police uniform every day has truly been a humbling experience,” Sanchez continued. “I am proud of the progress we have made as an agency during my tenure.”
Sanchez pointed out that the body-worn camera program, outreach programs, and increased diversity to the department are some of his proud moments throughout his tenure as the city’s chief officer.
However, his statement does not include the controversies that allegedly triggered his resignation. One such issue that caused many to call for his termination is the incident late last year wherein two Pasadena police officers hitting an unarmed black man was caught on cam.
The involved police initially claimed that Christopher Ballew, a 21-year-old African American man who allegedly had no front license and has heavily tinted windows, was the one who did not cooperate and even tried to get a baton from the officer.
But witnesses and a video told a different story. The cellphone video caught by a bystander had shown two police officers trying to subdue him at a gas station.
One officer was seen hitting Ballew with a baton and the other one screams while punching him and slamming his head on the pavement.
Ballew, who was rushed to the hospital for his broken leg, was still charged with assault on a police officer and other unspecified offenses. He eventually has filed a claim for damages against the city of Pasadena, the Police Department, Chief Phillip Sanchez, and the two officers involved.