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Former RPD Chief Singletary sues city, mayor over his firing 

click to enlarge Former Rochester Police Chief La'Ron Singletary. - FILE PHOTO
  • FILE PHOTO
  • Former Rochester Police Chief La'Ron Singletary.
Former Rochester Police Chief La’Ron Singletary has filed a lawsuit against Mayor Lovely Warren and the city of Rochester over his firing last year.

Singletary is seeking at least $1.5 million in damages for his termination and defamation of character. He is also seeking punitive damages.

When asked, Singletary’s lawyers would not comment further.

Singletary was fired last September, shortly after the death of Daniel Prude in police custody became public and sparked mass protests. Prude's death in March 2020 was largely kept quiet for nearly six months, until his family spoke to the media. Protesters and one of the investigations alleged a cover-up.

In a statement, the city stood by Singletary's termination, stating that "there has been a legacy in the Rochester Police Department of untruthfulness."

Singletary's testimony to the special counsel hired by City Council to investigate officials' handling of information related to Prude's death "detailed his own inability to tell the truth," the statement said.

"Mr. Singletary failed in his duties as Chief and was rightfully terminated due to those failures, said the city's statement," the statement continued.

In his complaint, Singletary alleges that Warren, and those acting on her behalf in city government, made false statements about his work and omitted information intentionally.  It said Singletary refused to lie for Warren, which created a hostile work environment that made it difficult to run the city police department.

On Sept. 8, 2020, Singletary announced that he was resigning as police chief later that month, but Warren fired him before that day arrived.

James Brown is a reporter for WXXI News, a media partner of CITY.

Jeremy Moule, CITY's news editor, contributed to this story. He can be reached at jmoule@rochester-citynews.com.

click image wxxi_news_partners.png

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