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Chief challenged on systemic racism, accountability at final police forum

The last in a series of public forums on policing in Tiburon offered perhaps the most direct challenges to the department, sparking conversations about systemic racism, profiling, accountability — and the reservations that people of color may face when weighing whether to confront a town government that’s overwhelmingly white.

The online forum Oct. 19 was for anyone who missed the four in-person community circles in the Tiburon Police Department’s “Living & Growing Together” program, which was initiated by Chief Ryan Monaghan and co-hosted by the San Rafael-based nonprofit Transformative Justice Institute to allow for residents to provide direct, collaborative feedback about ways police can better serve the community.

“For me, I don’t know if there’s systemic racism here,” he said, stating he is “sensitive to that issue” but that without a full set of data he can’t make a determination. He said the issue would require a much deeper dive than just looking at policing. “All I know is that if there is the perception … that that exists, I want to try and address that.”

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