Those who knew — and battled — Frank Rizzo weigh in on statue’s future

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 (Matt Rourke/AP Photo)

(Matt Rourke/AP Photo)

As the debate continues over whether the statue of former Philadelphia Mayor Frank Rizzo should be moved from the plaza of the city’s Municipal Services Building. former Mayor Ed Rendell said that — on reflection, it might not have been the best site. Mayor Jim Kenney, meanwhile, has asked the Philadelphia Art Commission to address the issue.

Rizzo served as the city’s mayor from 1972 to 1980. Critics argue he reigned over a corrupt police department and used his power to alienate minorities. Supporters contend he was a devout public servant who wasn’t afraid to speak his mind.

WHYY senior reporter Dave Davies has been speaking to some Philadelphians who battled with Rizzo in the ’60s and ’70s when he was generating controversy as a police commissioner and then mayor.

Their reactions to calls for removing the statue may surprise you.

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