NAPO Washington Reports

NAPO Condemns AZ Democrats Invocation of Cop-Killer in Response to George Floyd’s Death

June 1, 2020



June 1, 2020

The Honorable David Bradley
Senate Democratic Leader
Arizona State Senate
1700 West Washington, Room 213
Phoenix, Arizona 85007

Dear Senator Bradley:

On behalf of the National Association of Police Organizations (NAPO), I am writing to you to condemn the invocation of convicted murderer and cop-killer Joanne Chesimard in the Arizona State Senate Democratic Caucus statement on Reaction to Murder of George Floyd.

NAPO is a coalition of police associations from across the United States that serves to advance the interests of America’s law enforcement officers. Founded in 1978, NAPO now represents more than 1,000 police units and associations and 241,000 sworn law enforcement officers who share a common dedication to fair and effective crime control and law enforcement.

Joanne Chesimard is the only woman on the FBI’s most wanted terrorist list for her role in the cold-blooded killing of New Jersey State Trooper Werner Foerster in 1973. The fact that she is quoted in your statement as a leader to follow is an affront to the men and women who have dedicated their lives to protecting our communities as law enforcement officers – above all to the family and friends of police officers who have made the ultimate sacrifice.

What happened to George Floyd was egregious.  There is no legal justification, self-defense justification, or moral justification for the actions of the officer.  However, by quoting Joanne Chesimard in your statement, you are condoning and promoting that violence and killing a law enforcement officer is a responsible way to affect change.  As a State Senator, Arizona’s and the broader law enforcement community counts on you to stand up for and support the men and women who risk their lives every day to ensure our neighborhoods and communities are safe.  You cannot do so unless you repudiate everything for which Joanne Chesimard stands. There is no way to delink Chesimard from the role she played in the execution-style killing of State Trooper Foerster or the fact that she is now a wanted fugitive living free in Cuba while no justice has been brought to Trooper Foerster’s family for his murder.

You must condemn the invocation of Joanne Chesimard and everything she represents.


Michael McHale