Community raises more than 1,100 signatures in support of Police Chief

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Video: Here Wilmington community confront Wilmington City Council members during public comment.

Following a vote of “No Confidence” by Wilmington City Council members, community rallies in support of Chief Tracy.

WILMINGTON (DE) BY DIGITAL STAFF: Following a vote of “No Confidence” earlier last month by Wilmington City Council members at a special public safety meeting, Joanie Husband wasted no time to appeal to her community in support of Wilmington Police Chief Robert Tracy.

“The vote was a stunning blow to the integrity of the city of Wilmington and a slap in the face to the Wilmington community,” Husband said. “The citizens of Wilmington deserve more from their elected leaders who care more about baseless, politically motivated attacks than helping to improve our city.”

Husband feels “it was unjust – and the opposite of what CC (City Council) should be doing – which is bringing the city together, instead of creating all this division. Makes me sad to see our beautiful city so divided.”

What You Need To Know: Wilmington City Council passed a resolution of a “No Confidence” vote against Wilmington Police Chief Robert Tracy at a special public safety meeting.

In response to the vote, community members have rallied for signatures in support of Chief Tracy on


“The reality is that Chief Tracy and the WPD have helped to stem the shooting and violence that plague our city.,” Said Husband, who organized the petition. “The vote of no confidence should be focused on the judicial system that has allowed career criminals to be released to terrorize our community.”

“We call on the City Council to unite our city rather than divide us. We are stronger together!,” Husband added.

In her petition Husband says those who signed the petition fully support Chief Tracy and each and every police officer of the WPD (Wilmington Police Department) who have worked so diligently to curb violence in Wilmington through the gun violence epidemic, a global health pandemic and amidst widespread societal interruptions.

By signing the petition, the people of the City of Wilmington are expressing complete CONFIDENCE in Chief Tracy and the WPD, and we appreciate their efforts and are grateful our city has such dedicated civil servants. Additionally, Chief Tracy is extremely well qualified for the position of Police Chief, and has demonstrated a high level of expertise, dedication and commitment., Husband says.

The “Special” public safety meeting that was held on Thursday January 20, 2022 at 5:00 p.m.,  was virtual due to the recent COVID-19 surge Delaware has been experiencing since the Thanksgiving holiday.

Photo Source:

The resolution, passed by a 6-4 vote. Council members that voted for the resolution were  Linda Gray (1st District Council Member), Shané Darby (2nd District Council Member), Zanthia Oliver (3rd District Council Member), Michelle Harlee (4th District Council Member), Yolanda McCoy (6th District Council Member), and City Council President Ernest Congo.

Those who voted against the resolution were Nathan Field (8th District Council Member), Maria Cabrera (Council Member At-Large), James Spadola (Council Member At-Large), Loretta Walsh (Council Member At-Large); and Present were: Chris Johnson (7th District Council Member) who expressed the “vote of no confidence” and recommends a third-party entity to audit the Wilmington Police Department be selected within 90 days. There was one vacancy.

Photo Courtesy of Wilmington City Council | President Ernest Congo

Wilmington City Council President, Ernest Congo said he just wants Chief Tracy to do the right thing. 

“I just want Chief Tracy to do the right thing. I’m not trying to fire him. I’m not trying to defund the police, although some people may, I just want to give him an opportunity to do the right thing.

Congo added, this is a vote in support of our constituents, and especially from the officers in the Wilmington Police Department who are extremely frustrated and demoralized when they don’t feel there is an opportunity to advance.”

“Chief Tracy is a great listener and he is very proactive in addressing issues of safety in our City. His strategy in reducing crime and violence is our City needs our full support.,” Said one supporter on

“I do think that our chief needs to be more proactive, and more vocal about a plan, whether it’s a plan to combat crime, increase diversity, and a plan to improve morale.,” Congo said.

“Chief Tracy is not only a proven, effective leader for our city’s police department but also a valued neighbor and member of our community.,” Said supporter Jenna Montgomery. “He and his family live right within the city he so dedicatedly serves and protects.”

Wilmington Mayor Mike Purzycki says the vote does “a terrible disservice to the reputation of an outstanding professional who has served this city so well and who has my unqualified support.”

“This is a very sad day for our city. Council’s resolution this evening does a terrible disservice to the reputation of an outstanding professional who has served this city so well and who has my unqualified support. We have been fortunate to have Robert Tracy leading our department for the past four and a half years during one of the most difficult times for police departments in our nation’s history and I look forward to his continued leadership.,” Purzycki said in an email statement.


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Delaware Newsline is a digital Delaware News Organization that provides local and national breaking news content to its Delaware and U.S. audience, by utilizing multiple platforms including web, social media, and video.

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