Betty Shelby, police officer cleared in Terence Crutcher killing, resigns

Terence Crutcher with family member Courtesy of Crutcher family

Terence Crutcher with family member Courtesy of Crutcher family

Less than two months after she was acquitted of manslaughter and returned to work, Officer Betty Jo Shelby is resigning from the Tulsa Police Department.

"Since being reinstated, I have found that sitting behind a desk, isolated from all my fellow officers and citizens of Tulsa, is just not for me", Shelby wrote in a press release distributed by the police union.

Officer Betty Shelby is seen in this undated photo provided by the Tulsa Police Department in Oklahoma.

The Tulsa County District Attorney's Office charged Shelby six days later, prior to the completion of a Tulsa Police Department internal investigation into the circumstances of the shooting. "Don't make this happen,'" said Shelby in a 60 Minutes interview that aired in April. President Trump seized on the shooting to argue for tougher immigration enforcement and for the abolition of so-called "sanctuary cities" like San Francisco, which prohibits police officers from cooperating with federal authorities on most deportation matters.

Now that Shelby is stepping down, Crutcher's family continues their fight for justice. Shelby testified that she was scared because Crutcher appeared to be under the influence of drugs, didn't obey her commands and looked like he was reaching inside his vehicle.

Betty Shelby, cop who fatally shot Terence Crutcher, resigns from Tulsa police department
Tulsa officer Betty Shelby tired of 'pushing paper,' resigns

Shelby will leave the department effective August 3, she said in a statement. "2207520000.1500055580./1551289884922819/?type=3&theater" target="_blank">Tulsa Fraternal Order of Police's Facebook page, Shelby wrote that it was "with a heavy heart" that she made the decision to resign from the Tulsa Police Department. She had been on unpaid leave since September 22, when prosecutors charged her.

One minister said her swift return to the force was "a slap in the face".

The suit seeks at least 75,000 USA dollars (£57,000) in damages and calls for widespread reform in the Tulsa police department, including mandatory training for officers on managing suspects with mental health or substance abuse issues. Crutcher's high-profile killing and Shelby's acquittal sparked protests in Tulsa.

A lawyer and spokesman for Crutcher's family has not returned a call and email seeking comment on Shelby's resignation.

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