South Bend mayor and presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg is facing criticism for his handling of a police shooting in the Indiana city.
The 2020 hopeful, who would be the first openly gay presidential candidate on a major-party ticket if he secures the Democratic Party’s nomination in the coming year, traveled back to his hometown to respond to a local situation involving a police officer who shot and killed Eric J. Logan, a 54-year-old Black man who lived in South Bend.
Specifics about the shooting remain unclear — Sergeant Ryan O’Neill, the white officer who shot and killed Logan, did not have his body camera turned on at the time of the shooting, The Daily Beast reports — but that hasn’t stopped local activists from organizing to demand truth and justice from Buttigieg and SBPD chief Scott Ruzkowski.
Buttigieg returned to South Bend over the weekend to meet with his constituents about Logan’s death, the South Bend Tribune reports, as many locals reportedly feel that the mayor has ignored their needs to focus on the campaign. Buttigieg promised at a town hall event he co-organized that he would ask for a federal investigation into the shooting and for a special prosecutor to be appointed, The New York Times reports, but attendees demanded more — more answers and more action.
“A lot of tension in the air right now — you can cut it with a knife,” Blu Casey, a South Bend activist, told the Times. “[Pete]’s doing bad within the Black community right now.”