When Boston Police Officer John Moynihan was shot in the face Friday night by Angelo West, a black man whom police killed at the scene, Commissioner William Evans worked to ensure that tensions didn't escalate. Evans talked to local religious leaders and other activists and, in an unorthodox step, showed them video of the shooting Saturday morning.
"We've learned it's important to build all our community leaders and all get the same message," he said. "We didn't want the city to get the wrong message."
Having the footage, taken by a business's security camera, also made him reconsider his reluctance to equip the force with body cameras, he told Greater Boston host Jim Braude.
"A lot of people think they're a quick fix," Evans said, "but my philosophy is, unless you work with the community, you gain their respect and trust, you can have all the cameras in the world, but you've got to get at what's underlying the issue: building relationships so the community trusts us."
Evans also gave an update about Moynihan ("The good news is, he's doing well.), explained why at a press conference he showed empathy for the man who shot him, and discussed the department's approach to aggressive protesters.