Rochester-area pastors speak out in support of Warren amid calls for resignation

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — Free the People Roc continues calling for the resignation of Mayor Lovely Warren on this eighth straight day of protests and marches through the city seeking justice for Daniel Prude and his family.

Earlier Wednesday, several Rochester church leaders spoke out in full support of Mayor Warren as she navigates through these difficult times.

But many activists have lost confidence in Mayor Warren and believe she’s part of a cover-up in the death of Daniel Prude.

Citizen Action of New York hosted a town hall meeting Wednesday night to discuss the public health crisis and policing. They say what happened to Daniel Prude must never happen again.

"This murder was hidden from the community for five months by former Police Chief La’Ron Singletary who announced his retirement yesterday, and our current Mayor Lovely Warren, who we have called for her resignation as well," community organizer Stevie Vargas said.

As demonstrators demand her removal from office, Warren does have support from several local church leaders.

"Mayor Warren has acknowledged that mistakes were made and we accept her apologies because we are a forgiving people," Desjamebra Robinson said.

Tuesday night, marchers painted a big "resign" sign outside Rochester City Hall.

"It does not address the police officers and the EMTs who did not put Daniel Prude in a police car after he was arrested, or in the ambulance when it arrived," Pastor William Harvey of Power House Church said. "The calls for Mayor Warren to step down do not address the deep-seated racism entrenched in our police department."

Both Citizen Action of New York and the pastors agree on police reforms.

"Numerous efforts have been made to address police department misconduct, but even with these reforms the murder of Daniel T. Prude, and the militaristic actions of the police department towards protestors make clear that there must be radical transformation of how we police in this city," Harvey said.