Faith leaders react to Savannah Police Chief Minter departure

Published: Jul. 6, 2022 at 6:20 PM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Savannah’s law enforcement leaders, including Chief Minter, have recognized the important role faith leaders play in helping the community heal in times of tragedy and tension in Savannah.

At the first City Council meeting in June, Chief Minter highlighted a new Clergy Response Team initiative, with the goal of it establishing a team of area clergy members who can respond to violent incidents, providing comfort and restoring calm.

“And I hope that we can build on that strong foundation that Chief Minter has started here,” Rev. Claire Marich said.

Reverend Claire Marich is a Savannah Police Chaplain for the Eastside Precinct, and says she believes Chief Minter has worked hard in his four years to develop a strong relationship with local church leaders.

And she says she understands the difficulties surrounding the position of the chief of police, adding not all the issues in Savannah right now point back to that role.

“Some issues that we face are not an issue of the leader, but of the system. So there are some things that the new leader, the new chief is going to need a lot of support from the City Council and from the Mayor to achieve the types of changes we need in Savannah,” Rev. Claire Marich said.

Rev. Marich says one of the top issues the new chief will face will be retaining officers, adding she sees a need for more mid-level experience officers in the department.

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