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TPD Chief offers resignation after in-custody death

Tucson Police Chief Chris Magnus
Posted at 12:23 PM, Jun 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-25 08:58:18-04

TUCSON, Ariz. — Tucson Police Chief Chris Magnus has offered to resign from his post.

Magnus made the announcement at a press conference Wednesday about an April 21 incident in which 27-year-old Carlos Adrian Ingram-Lopez died while in police custody.

At Wednesday's news conference, Mayor Regina Romero said she didn't know Magnus would be offering his resignation and said she'll decide on whether to accept it.

City Attorney Mike Rankin, who was also at Wednesday's news conference, said there may be some confusion over whether the mayor, city manager or city council would be involved in deciding whether to accept Magnus's resignation.

"I think the chief of police needs to have a conversation with the city manager, but certainly it's also a question that will be directed to the mayor and council," Rankin said.

Magnus has served in the role since January 2016.

At Wednesday's news conference, police showed body camera video of an officer involved in the April incident that left Ingram-Lopez dead. The video shows police arriving at a home on Tucson's south side on a "disturbance call," where Ingram-Lopez is agitated, naked and screaming. Police restrain Ingram-Lopez, then cover him with two blankets. Several minutes later, Ingram-Lopez is unresponsive. It takes officers a moment to notice, but then they attempt to wake him up before starting CPR.

A TPD investigation into the incident found three officers involved had were guilty of "severe misconduct," and recommended their termination. Instead, the officers resigned.

Magnus said he thought the investigation and the department's subsequent actions were justified, but could not excuse the miscommunication over the incident. At Wednesday's press conference, Mayor Romero said she was only made aware of the incident on