Michael Cox, a Black officer, once beaten by his colleagues, was recently named the new Boston Police Commissioner.
According to news reports, Cox is set to return to his hometown of Boston after his 30-year-tenure as a police chief in Ann Arbor, Michigan. He’ll reportedly become the city’s new police commissioner following a civil rights lawsuit he filed against BPD for a vicious beating he received from colleagues. The alleged beating occurred in 1995 as he attempted to chase a criminal suspect while wearing plain clothes on duty. At the time, police allegedly mistook him for a suspect and beat him so severely that he was unrecognizable. He also sustained head injuries and kidney damage.
None of the officers involved in the beating were ever criminally charged, and the BPD reportedly tried to cover the incident up. Cox even said the department harassed and threatened his family in an attempt to keep them quiet. Thankfully, he won his lawsuit against the city of Boston and BPD and received compensation but not until 2011.
However, the Roxbury native never gave up being a police officer and dedicated his future career to addressing racism within the police force.
“Since 1995, I have dedicated my life to making sure that both the Boston police department and policing, in general, has grown and learned…to make sure that we have structures and mechanisms in place to make sure that we never repeat that kind of incident against anyone,” he told reporters on July 13.
Cox added that his appointment was an “emotional moment” and marked an “exciting time” for the BPD.
“I think this is a very exciting time. I think the officers need someone to support them, and I’m going to be their biggest cheerleader,” he said.
Cox will reportedly begin his tenure as the new Boston Police Commissioner on Aug. 15.