Westbrook Police Chief Janine Roberts is retiring at the end of the year, months after coming under fire and apologizing for statements she made about the Black Lives Matter movement.
“Her record speaks for itself,” city officials said on Wednesday. “Chief Roberts will continue to lead the department until her retirement date, and the city will be working to fill the Police Chief position prior to her retirement.”
“On behalf of the city of Westbrook, I wish to express our sincere and heartfelt appreciation for everything Chief Roberts has given to our community,” Mayor Michael T. Foley said about Roberts — who held the position for six years. “We wish her success, health and happiness as she begins the next chapter of her life.”
Roberts set off controversy during a June meeting of area police leaders on police-minority relations, saying “every life matters” — a dismissive response to the Black Lives Matter movement. She apologized later during a demonstration at Portland City Hall attended by more than 1,000 demonstrators, according to the Portland Press Herald.
Roberts defended her department’s record during another June meeting between school and city officials and the community to discuss policies after recent anti-racism protests, according to American Journal.
“I acknowledge there is room for improvement, as to what that is, we will figure that out and work together,” Roberts said. “But it’s more than a one-way street. There are things as individuals and as groups we can do.”