NEWTON, Mass. (WBZ NewsRadio) — Less than a day after the Mayor of Newton declared reforms for the city's police department, the Chief of Police has announced his retirement.
On Tuesday night, Mayor Ruthanne Fuller said Newton Police Chief David MacDonald had told her he wanted to focus more on his health and his family.
"It made sense to him that this Summer would be the time for him to hand over his gold badge after 27 years of service,” Fuller said in the statement. “He will now be able to spend more time with his wife and their two children.”
The day before MacDonald signaled he would retire, Mayor Fuller had announced the creation of a new civilian review board to review the Newton police department, and she said police would adopt 8 Can’t Wait reforms, including a ban on chokeholds.
Chief MacDonald's plan to retire also followed recent public criticism from Tim Duncan, a Newton resident and former deputy athletic director of Northeastern University.
According to MetroWest Daily News, Duncan recently accused Newton officers of racially profiling him while they were searching for another black man who was suspected of committing murder in Boston.
Duncan said during the incident, one officer had pulled a gun on him while another was demanding his identification. It happened just five days before George Floyd was killed by police in Minneapolis, which sparked weeks of nationwide protests calling for police reform.
As the Boston Globe reports, Duncan went public with his experience, which prompted large protests outside Newton Police Department calling for reform.
Fuller said she has not yet appointed an acting police chief, and she will be working with MacDonald to decide his final retirement date.
“I am proud of his commitment to procedural justice and treating all people with dignity and giving residents a voice," Fuller said of MacDonald. "I am grateful for his dedicated service to the City of Newton."
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