After council met privately for 45 minutes, Kennedy read a brief statement in open session that put an investigation to rest. She said later she was asked to read the statement as written.
Greensboro won’t hold independent investigation into death of unarmed Black man | State and Regional News
“I am the person who asked for us to have an independent investigation, both as it relates to the events connected to Marcus Smith and to a larger investigation around institutional culture and essentially an agency-wide conduct review of the Greensboro Police Department,” she said. “So on the advice of the city attorney, council went into closed session and received advice from an attorney who practices exclusively in the area of independent investigation.
“Council has decided not to pursue any such investigation at this time.”
Then Mayor Nancy Vaughan asked for a motion to adjourn the work session.
When asked by text message if she could say more about what happened, Kennedy responded, “I wish I could.”
Councilman Justin Outling, who is a candidate for mayor, also said he could not shed light on council’s closed-door decision not to hold an independent investigation.
In the year since the death of George Floyd at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer, protests and criticism of police practices nationwide have taken center stage. For some, the Smith case cracked open a door into police practices that demanded further investigation.