The police chief of a Detroit suburb resigned Wednesday just two days after one of the department's officers was charged with the assault of a black man. The incident, which took place in January, was caught in a video that sparked outrage over the use of excessive force by law enforcement officials.
Police Chief Vicki Yost's resignation will be effective immediately, a statement from the city of Inkster reportedly stated. However, the statement did not address the controversy over the assault of motorist Floyd Dent during a traffic stop about 20 miles west of downtown Detroit.
"The city would like to thank Chief Yost for her services and wish her the best in future endeavors,” the city of Inkster, reportedly said, in the statement.
Former Inkster Officer William Melendez was charged Monday with assault and misconduct for allegedly punching Dent, the Detroit Free Press reported. If convicted, Melendez could face up to 10 years in prison, according to Reuters. Melendez had reportedly claimed that Dent threatened to kill him and was likely under the influence of drugs. Dent was charged with resisting arrest and possessing cocaine, but the 57-year-old auto worker claimed the drugs were planted in his vehicle by the officers. The drug charges against the African-American were dropped on Wednesday.
"I think it's long overdue," Ron Scott, head of the Detroit Coalition Against Police Brutality, reportedly said about Yost's resignation. "I felt for a long time the Chief had taken some questionable actions. She was very slow to move. The city of Inkster needs to clean house, to change how they choose officers, how they're vetted."
Protesters had called the incident a case of racial profiling and likened it to the fatal shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, the Detroit Free Press reported. Former Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson resigned in March, following a U.S. Justice Department report that revealed widespread racially-biased abuses in the city's police department and municipal court.