DETROIT (AP) — Detroit's police chief stepped down Monday after a week of embarrassing revelations about a sexual relationship with a subordinate, forcing the city to search for a fifth leader in four years for a department dealing with one of the nation's highest violent-crime rates.
During a news conference, Mayor Dave Bing said he didn't force Ralph Godbee's departure after 25 years in the department and the last two as chief. Still, he said it was the "right decision" for Godbee to leave.
"He was very contrite, I think embarrassed," Bing said. "He felt he had let me down. He felt he had let the department down. He felt he had let the citizens of Detroit down. We're not perfect individuals, and a lot of us make mistakes. This one was very costly."
Godbee has not publicly commented on the revelations of his affair with Angelica Robinson, an internal-affairs officer. There was no mention of the scandal in an eight-paragraph letter from Godbee to Bing that announced the retirement. A copy was released to reporters after the news conference.
Bing placed Godbee on a 30-day suspension last week pending an investigation into the claims by Robinson's attorney that the 37-year-old woman had wanted the relationship to end but that Godbee did not.
Robinson posted a photo of herself with her police gun in her mouth on the social media site Twitter after learning Godbee was at a police conference a week ago in San Diego with another woman, attorney David Robinson said.
He said Godbee had other officers locate Angelica Robinson and put her under surveillance.
The scandal is another punch in the gut for a department already demoralized by the city's financial woes. Beat officers are working 12-hour days on top of having to take 10 percent pay cuts.
"We cannot look at this incident as an indictment across the entire 2,600-plus police officers," Bing said. "They're under a lot of stress and strain. I sympathize with them. I empathize with them."
Godbee was appointed to the $140,400-a-year chief's job in 2010, after Warren Evans was fired partly for a relationship with another officer, Lt. Monique Patterson.
Godbee also had a romantic relationship with Patterson when she was his subordinate and before she began dating Evans.
The mayor told reporters Monday that he had talked to Godbee "on more than one occasion" about his relationships.
"He confided in me that he had changed his ways," Bing said. "I had no reason not to believe that. … He didn't live up to those expectations and it leads us to where we are."
Godbee joined the department in 1987 at age 19 and rose to assistant chief in 2007. He left the force but returned as assistant chief in July 2009 when Evans was hired.
Assistant Chief Chester Logan, who had assumed Godbee's responsibilities during the brief suspension, will serve as interim chief while the city conducts a national search for a successor. Logan, an officer for 38 years, said he likely will apply for the permanent job.
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (6/18-6/24)
25 photos Launch gallery
1. Me & the homie @jaleelwhite #RujohnFoundation Happy to be in Jamaica! Good times
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5. Good Morning. Early day in Detroit! Making press rounds for @thebossnetwork's Ladies That Lead Tour. Thank you @traycemadre and @colourbynumbr for my glam.
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6. POWER the best show on TV @djenvy, Queens we so big out here. #EFFENVODKA #FRIGO
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7. They said u lost a step, wasn't explosive as once was, the best days was in the real view, questioned your drive, your leadership, your commitment, you don't have killer instinct, going back home is the worst mistake in your career, he got the coach fired, players traded, won't work between him and Kyrie, Him and Kev won't work, love your teammates to much, there's no way he can deliver a championship in his hometown, etc etc etc.... But guess what THATS NONE OF MY BUSINESS #StriveForGreatness #ThisOneIsForTheLand #PutSomeRespeckOnMyName Hahahaha!!! Yes sir
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8. Oooooh weeee this man right here is responsible for at least three of our four babies!! #JOE ❤❤❤🎤 #rnb #king #voicelikebutter #ForPeetesSake
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9. Hanging with my @abcnetwork family! @abcunclebuck tonite y'all check us out ! @anthonyanderson @traceeellisross
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10. My broski ( @sayeedshahidi ) and I are on Top 5 Live on @go90 at 5 (which is super duper close)! Make sure to tune in :) #UncleBuck #Blackish
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11. Lights out💤 #GoodNight
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12. Late nights mornings
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13. Ran into the lovely talented @siedahgarrett on this brutiful favvuz deh!
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14. #halal #love #thedargans #kattwilliamsSHOW #mashallah when that Jennah piece HIT!! @sweetjennahcollection glasses by @baddieglamaccessories LIZ 😍 @dynamiteko top @dazzledmv and jeans @thevision414 and shoes: @louboutinworld
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15. Big Hair and Optical Illusions #OceanDrive #MiamiLiving #coverparty
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16. MAMA and THE SAVAGES ... ⚓️ #supportyourlocalgirlgang
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17. From the bottom of my ❤️, thank you new followers & old! & hello fellow night owls! #grateful #racheltrue #naturalhair #curlyhair #curlygirl #healthyhair
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18. I feel so grateful because I met these amazing young minds, visiting from Houston TX, during their college tour stop today at #usc.These students are ALL extraordinary and embody academic excellence so I'm humbled to have shared a few moments with them to applaud and celebrate their bright futures ahead! Thank you @EmergeFellows for inviting me to speak and blessing me with your love and attention this afternoon!
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19. Happy Fathers Day Pops. U taught me how to be a man. Lessons of love, hard work & gratefulness. Sorry the fishing didn't stick. LOL. I Love U!
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20. Sky Zone and Ice Cream! Best Fathers Day Ever!! Photo credit @mariahcarey
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21. Look what finally came in the mail 😎 #mtvmovieawards2016 💥+🌽! #straightouttacompton
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22. Claudia Jordan: ....
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23. 'Member that time I almost knocked a bajillion dollar camera off the car? Really? Yeah, me neither! #Greenleaf Episode 2 comin atcha!
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24. Full of love. #birthday #Cabo
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25. Oh hey! Look who just joined Snapchat
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