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San Antonio police union returns 'no confidence' vote in Chief McManus

SAPOA says 97 percent of voting members disapprove

SAN ANTONIO – The San Antonio Police Officers Association said Thursday that its voting members have returned a "no confidence" vote in Police Chief William McManus.

The union said 97 percent of the members who voted do not approve of the direction McManus is taking the department. According to SAPOA, 1,944 of 2,164 members took part in the vote.

The union also asked members if they thought SAPOA should return to negotiations with the city while the city's lawsuit is still being pursued. The city is suing the union over the 10-year evergreen clause in its current contract.

SAPOA said 99 percent of the members who voted do not want the union to negotiate while the lawsuit is still being pursued.

RELATED: City offers 3-year evergreen clause to police union

SAPOA president Michael Helle said in a statement that the vote is a "clear mandate the Chief must go and we will not return to the table until the lawsuit is dropped."

"Morale is at an all-time low, we are understaffed by 221 officers and police officers are being sued by the city," Helle said. "The rank and file have said in one loud voice, they do not trust the chief, they won’t follow him and they have no confidence in his leadership."

San Antonio Mayor Ivy Taylor released a video statement Thursday morning that addresses the ongoing situation with SAPOA.

"Now is the time to turn to solutions – and as angry as community members may be and as uncomfortable and disconcerted as SAPD officers may be with changing times and expectations, firing a highly competent and respected police chief is not the solution, as it only serves to divide us at a time when we need to come together now more than ever," Taylor said in part.

The video statement also addresses the recent disciplinary actions against Officer John Lee, who shot and killed unarmed Antronie Scott.