Mayor criticizes McNesby over ‘rabid animals’ comment

Philadelphia’s mayor is criticizing the head of the city police union for labeling protesters outside an officer’s home a “pack of rabid animals.”

Union president John McNesby made the comment last week at a rally supporting officers.

A week earlier, a Black Lives Matter group and others protested outside the home of Officer Ryan Pownall, who is on administrative leave after fatally shooting a black man in June. The shooting is under review because police say it appears the man was shot as he ran away.

Mayor Jim Kenney told Philadelphia magazine, “Referring to black people as animals has a long, painful history in this country. Fighting divisive words with divisive words gets us nowhere.”

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McNesby told the magazine he never referred to black people in his remarks, and had no idea if protesters were black, white or Asian.

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