It is offensive to me that the outstanding professional conduct of the Princeton Police Department and its efforts to unite our community have been called into question.
Our Police Department works diligently to create a harmonious melting pot. Ms. Perry’s agenda to create a racial issue and your support of her allegations is outrageous. Our police deserve so much better. Your apology would be the first step in the right direction.
Cynthia Davison Clausen
Thank you for responding to my email. However, you have not addressed my request for a formal apology to the chief and men and women of the Princeton Police Department — unless by simply regurgitating the talking points you shared with the Princeton community that appeared in the Daily Princetonian soon after Ms. Perry’s arrest you meant for me to infer that you have no reason to proffer an apology.
The passage of a week’s time and release of the dash cam, the independent review conducted by the Mercer County Prosecutor’s office finding that the arresting officer deserves “commendation” rather than “condemnation,” as well hundreds of online comments all give credence to and support for my request that you issue a public apology to Chief Sutter and the men and women of our police force immediately. Their professionalism and integrity have been falsely called into question by an employee of the University.
Your comment, which you referred to in response to my initial email — “I have a high regard for Chief Sutter and the police force and, in my experience both at the University and as a long-time Princeton resident, I know that the town’s officers conduct themselves professionally and with integrity”– begs the question, why then were you so quick to call for an investigation of the officer’s actions, suggesting that Ms. Perry’s claims that she was ‘mistreated’ had validity? Was it because she is “a respected scholar and beloved teacher” that would somehow insulate her from humiliation and embarrassment? How about the humiliation and embarrassment of the respected police officer who was falsely accused and restricted to desk duty pending the outcome of the Prosecutor’s findings? How about his embarrassment and humiliation of being falsely accused of wrongdoing when in fact he acted courteously and professionally in carrying out his legal responsibility to place Ms. Perry under arrest, place her in handcuffs and transport her to the police station for processing. Don’t you think he should have been afforded the same “compassion” you afforded Ms. Perry? How about his family? His colleagues? The residents of Princeton? It was very difficult to see the news of Ms. Perry’s accusations played out on television, the radio, national and international print media.
Reading that you and Ms. Appelget were quick to call the mayor in response to Ms. Perry’s arrest in an effort to ease Ms. Perry’s discomfort of being arrested is troublesome. It appears that you both believe a member of the faculty deserves preferential treatment. What did you think alerting the mayor would do? Did you expect that Ms. Perry’s connection to the University would somehow make a difference in how her case would be treated? Ms. Perry’s flagrant disrespect of the law does not insulate her from the consequences of ignoring the responsibilities that come along with the privilege of driving a motor vehicle. It is elitist to think otherwise.
Ms. Perry knew exactly what she was doing when she falsely tweeted and /or publicly asserted that “The police treated me inappropriately and disproportionately….what I experienced was far more likely because my skin is a deep brown, my nose if round, and my hair coily…the fact of my blackness is not incidental to this matter.” when in fact none her assertions are supported by the evidence to date. Her tweets and her actions to date clearly support her personal/professional agenda of inciting racial tension where none exists. She even went so far as to call Chief Sutter a liar. Hopefully Ms. Perry will face professional condemnation from her esteemed colleagues ~ especially those within her department who posted an open letter of support immediately upon hearing her false accusations ~ and disciplinary action by the Broad of Trustees. Rightfully her integrity has been tarnished.
My request for a public apology from you is reasonable and would do much for the Princeton community, inside and outside the hallowed halls of ivy. Rather than help our community, Ms. Perry’s statements and false accusations have provided a platform for greater racial disharmony and tension, and have tarnished the good name of our officers in blue. The absence of an apology from you provides more fuel for this ugly fire she has ignited.