Blackwell: 'I've done a good job for this city' - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Blackwell: 'I've done a good job for this city'

(PHOTO: FOX19 NOW) (PHOTO: FOX19 NOW)
FOX19 NOW reporter Michael Baldwin sat down with Jeffrey Blackwell after he was fired Wednesday. (FOX19 NOW) FOX19 NOW reporter Michael Baldwin sat down with Jeffrey Blackwell after he was fired Wednesday. (FOX19 NOW)
CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) -

Despite his firing Wednesday, Jeffrey Blackwell said he think he has done a good job.

He said he found out he was being fired right about the same time City Manager Harry Black sent out a memo about 11 a.m. announcing his "termination with just cause."

“My closest friends have surmised that something was in the works for a long time,” he told FOX19 NOW in an interview at a Downtown barbershop where he gets his hair cut.

Flanked by his lawyer and two sons, the chief reiterated a statement he made earlier in the day that he is considering suing.

He said he wanted to stay positive and would not answer all of the allegations against him, insisting the truth will come out in due time.

Black's 35-page memo reads like a laundry list of things Black documented that Blackwell failed to accomplish, leadership that led to unprecedented low morale and retaliation against employees. 

Blackwell denies the charges. “I believe that [the report] is absolutely untrue,” he said. “Candidly, I was surprised because I know I’ve done a good job for this city."

He questioned the report and felt Black never supported his position as chief. He said he felt the city manager was taking shots and trying to make something stick.

“We heard that it was violence, that it’s shootings, that it’s morale. I mean, what is it? What is it Harry?”

In a press conference earlier Wednesday, Black said Blackwell's firing was justified and supported by an independent climate assessment survey of the department and personal accounts from officers.

“Once I became aware that there had been several employees that had to seek medical attention because of the state of the environment that was it for me," Black said.

Despite the way his tenure ended, Blackwell said he still wishes the best for Cincinnati.

"I love the people of this city,” Blackwell said.

He expressed regret that he won't be able to complete what he started: “I truly am disappointed that I won’t be allowed to fulfill the mission of making this the safest big city in America.”

When he entered the city council chambers during Wednesdays meeting, his arrival sent shock waves through the room. 

Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley did  not acknowledge him or permit him to address the crowd.

Blackwell was given a standing ovation by a crowd of supporters who tried to pack the chamber. 

“I was touched," Blackwell said. "It almost made me emotional. It touched my heart.”

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