Arguing that the Miami Police Department has come a long way since a rash of deadly police-involved shootings, Chief Manuel Orosa has asked the U.S. Department of Justice to reconsider its decision to have a federal judge oversee the department.
Orosa, in response to findings last month that Miami engaged in an unconstitutional “pattern or practice” of excessive use of force, suggested that the Justice Department instead consider collaborating with the police department to forge changes.
Miami should not pay for the “sins” of its previous leaders, Orosa said in an Aug. 6 letter to Justice, laying much of the blame for the shootings on his predecessor, Miguel Exposito. Orosa said Justice should consider suing Exposito personally, as opposed to the department.
“It is my recommendation that if the USDOJ aims to seek sustainable remedies for our nation’s law enforcement agencies, it should hold those leaders personally responsible for their actions and accountable through civil action,” he wrote in the letter, obtained by the Miami Herald through a public records request.
In an interview Tuesday, Exposito called Orosa’s suggestion “ludicrous.”
“Nothing he says people can take seriously,” he said.
Exposito issued his own detailed rebuttal to Justice in an Aug. 8 letter to U.S. Senators Marco Rubio of Florida and Ted Cruz of Texas. The former chief defended his tenure and asked the Cuban-American Republicans to request a Senate inquiry into the Justice investigation, which Exposito blasted as slipshod.