Officials announced the resignation of Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw on Tuesday.
Outlaw will be departing in a few weeks to pursue a new opportunity. She has endured a variety of difficulties throughout her stay in Philadelphia.
According to municipal sources, Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw will quit the force (and the city) before the end of the month.
In a statement issued just before 10 a.m., Mayor Jim Kenney said that Outlaw had accepted “a new leadership position with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey as Deputy Chief Security Officer.”
Interim Police Commissioner was appointed by Kenney to First Deputy Commissioner John M. Stanford, Jr.
Outlaw’s final day as police commissioner, according to the mayor, will be September 22. She had filed her resignation letter on August 25, more than a week before the announcement.
Outlaw has been the commissioner for three and a half years, according to Kenney’s statement.
She was the first Black woman to oversee the city’s police department when she was appointed commissioner in February 2020.
She was also the first Black woman to manage the Portland, Oregon, police department before coming to Philadelphia, according to a statement.
“Commissioner Outlaw has worked relentlessly for three and a half years during an unprecedented era in our city and a number of crisis situations, and she deserves praise for her commitment to bring long-overdue reform to the Department after years of racism and gender discrimination prior to her appointment,” Mayor Jim Kenney said in a statement. “We wish her well in her new role and thank Commissioner Outlaw for her commitment to serving the people of Philadelphia.”
In a statement, Outlaw praised the “hard work, resilience, and professionalism of our force.”
“It has been my honor and privilege to serve during Mayor Kenney’s administration and alongside each member of the Philadelphia Police Department,” Commissioner Danielle Outlaw stated. “Our force’s dedication, tenacity, and professionalism are truly admirable.” Even in the face of hardship, our staff has shown amazing agility and fought relentlessly to uphold our pillars of organizational excellence, crime prevention and reduction, and community involvement and inclusion. My staff’s collaboration, creative thinking, and commitment have kept the Department moving ahead, and I am thankful.”
Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner stated in a statement on Outlaw’s term that he wished her luck in her new post.
“Thankfully, incidents of gun violence and other violent crime have continued to decline since the pandemic peak,” Krasner said in a statement. “It is critical that the City of Philadelphia seize this moment to get ahead of violent crime by investing robustly in prevention and modern enforcement with a state-of-the-art forensics lab and other innovations.” “As the city transitions to a new mayor, we must also recommit to integrity, transparency, and accountability within the Philadelphia Police Department and all law enforcement, including the DAO.” Earning the public’s confidence is vital to ensuring safety and harmony in all communities.”
Outlaw’s resignation comes at a time when she may have been replaced.
Philadelphia’s mayor has the authority to select a police commissioner.
Whoever wins the next election between Democrat Cherelle Parker and Republican David Oh will almost certainly choose their own police commissioner once in office.
Parker said in a statement Tuesday that Outlaw had to deal with a “tornado of black swan events” during her tenure in Philadelphia.
“Police Commissioners, like the Mayor of Philadelphia, are in a league of their own.” And, in terms of our magnificent city, no police commissioner has ever faced with the whirlwind of black swan occurrences that Commissioner Outlaw had to deal with throughout her time,” Parker said in a statement. “While many Monday morning quarterbacks will question her performance and decisions, I have nothing but respect and admiration for the work she has done for our city.” We should remember her name because I am certain that we will hear about her remarkable work in whatever position she chooses in the future.”
Soon after starting her work in Philadelphia, Outlaw was entrusted with coordinating the police reaction to the demonstrations after the death of George Floyd in 2020, which included the use of rubber bullets and tear gas.
The city of Philadelphia was ordered to pay more than $9 million to hundreds of people for the Philadelphia Police Department’s “excessive, militaristic use of force during peaceful protests.”
More recently, the police department has come under fire for its handling of at least two high-profile cases: the police killing of 27-year-old Eddie Jose Irizarry and the misguided response to a murder that followed a mass shooting in the city’s Kingsessing neighborhood, which Mayor Kenney, Governor Shapiro, and the FOP all condemned. react
Mayor Kenney, who selected Outlaw during his second term, remarked about her overall record as commissioner after announcing the news on Twitter.
“I’m looking at everything – and sometimes it’s hard to remember because the press doesn’t always remember it – what we’ve actually gone through,” Kenney remarked. “She arrived in March, I believe.” Two weeks before the epidemic broke out. The civic upheaval that followed the murder of George Floyd and afterwards the death of Walter Wallace. I’ll say it: four years of Donald Trump. It was difficult. Yes, I believe she did an excellent job.”
Kenney was also asked whether he thought Outlaw had a “fair shake” in Philadelphia.
“Fair is a tough term to define. I believe that if a woman enters a position that was previously or always occupied by males, there is a distinct standard that women are held to. That does not seem fair to me. “But I believe she met that standard with flying colors,” Kenney remarked.
Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro, who worked with Outlaw as the state’s Attorney General, lauded her efforts as well.
“I think it’s a loss for the city of Philadelphia, but I’m so happy for Commissioner Outlaw,” added Shapiro. “The commissioner has been straightforward. She was a collaborator on several of the investigations that I handled as Attorney General. She assisted us in making large drug raids and stopping gun traffickers in the neighborhood, as well as making our streets safer. It doesn’t imply that there aren’t problems of violence in our communities that need to be addressed, and we’ll keep working on that.”
Outlaw’s resignation elicited a response from Fraternal Order of Police President John McNesby as well.
“It was kind of surprising, but I think it’s a good move,” he said. “I believe it’s a shot to the officers on the street.” We’re short-handed. They’re overburdened. We’re around 1500 people short. It’s also a safety risk for the cops. It’s a matter of community safety.”
McNesby was also asked whether he feels Outlaw is to responsible for the department’s present problems.
“I mean, she eventually gets the blame.” “She’s the boss,” McNesby stated.
McNesby also said that he thinks the next commissioner would be hired from inside the organization.
“I’m hoping that the next mayor will move to promote someone from within the ranks if it isn’t John Stanford,” he added. “We’ve put a lot of time and money into our command staff.” And if you can’t choose a commissioner from among the hundred or so commanders here, we haven’t done our job in Philadelphia.”