Miami Gardens Police Chief Matthew Boyd retires amid officer harassment allegations

Boyd was city's first, only police chief

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. - Miami Gardens Police Chief Matthew Boyd retired Wednesday amid allegations that officers have committed civil rights violations against against the city's residents.

Boyd was the city's first and only police chief. He recently defended his officers accused of routinely harassing and arresting employees and customers at 207 Quickstop, a convenience store whose owner sued the city.

Boyd's resignation came a day after the NAACP asked the attorney general and Department of Justice to investigate the harassment claims.

The NAACP said some patrons of the store were arrested hundreds of times for little cause. The store's owner had installed surveillance cameras that captured some of the incidents.

"The Miami Gardens community deserves a police department that is committed to stopping crime and preserving justice," said Adora Obi Nweze, president of the NAACP Florida State Conference. "This is a good first step toward that goal, but hardly the last step. The systematic allegations of police intimidation did not happen because of just one person; they were the result of a sustained lack of oversight. We hope that the Miami Gardens Police Department will continue to work with the community on a fairer and more just system."

Boyd had originally planned to retire in January. Prior to being named police chief in Miami Gardens, he spent 24 years with the Miami-Dade Police Department.

Deputy Police Chief Paul Miller (pictured) was named interim police chief.

"What I can tell you is we're going to be very transparent in our process," said Miller. "We have an ongoing internal affairs investigation, which I can't comment on."

A search has been launched to find a replacement, said City Manager Cameron Benson.

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