Carmen Best, the first Black police chief in Seattle's history, left her post Wednesday, saying on her way out that the city council's police budget cuts had put her in a "position destined to fail," according to a report.
Best, 55, announced her resignation Aug 10, after the council made good on its promise to approve sweeping proposals that would slash the police department budget by $4 million and cut as many as 100 officers from the force.
"I believe 100% that they were putting me in a position destined to fail. Cutting a police department that already had low staffing numbers, that was already struggling to keep up with the demand," Best told NPR on Wednesday. "How are we going to provide for adequate public safety in that environment?"
Succeeding Best as interim chief is Adrian Diaz, who said he planned to shift 100 officers from "specialty units" to standard patrol units to help improve the department's 911 response time, Seattle's KOMO-TV reported.
Best, who had been Seattle’s police chief since August 2018, served with the Seattle PD for nearly three decades and held almost every position within the department, Fox News reports.
As she left the department for the final time, law enforcement officers and local residents lined up on Fifth Avenue in downtown Seattle near police headquarters to say goodbye.