Kentucky State Police commissioner resigning after report that training materials quoted Hitler

Kentucky State Police commissioner resigning after report that training materials quoted Hitler
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Kentucky State Police Commissioner Rodney Brewer plans to resign from his position after reports surfaced last week that police training materials quoted Adolf Hitler.

Brewer, who was commissioner at the time the slideshow in question was used, will resign by the end of the day Wednesday, Kentucky Justice and Public Safety Cabinet spokeswoman Morgan Hall confirmed to The Hill on Tuesday. She did not provide a reason for Brewer’s resignation.

Lt. Col. Phillip Burnett will become the interim commissioner as the state police search for a new commissioner, Hall said.


She also said the department "continues to work diligently to swiftly and thoroughly conduct an internal review of all training materials."

The news of the resignation follows a Friday report from Louisville’s Manual High School’s school newspaper the Manual Redeye that unveiled a previously used training slideshow used quotes from the German dictator and encouraged officers to be “ruthless.”

One of the quotes from Hitler included in the slideshow came from his “Mein Kampf," which read: “The very first essential for success is a perpetually constant and regular employment of violence.”

State police spokesperson Lt. Josh Lawson told the Louisville Courier Journal that the department stopped using the training slideshow in question in 2013, adding he didn’t know how long it was shown.

The students received the slideshow through a records request by local attorney David Ward who was gathering information in the discovery phase of a lawsuit. Ward had requested the state police materials used to train a detective who shot and killed a man in May 2018.

Gov. Andy Beshear reacted to the report last week, calling the fact that the slideshow included quotes from Hitler “absolutely unacceptable.”


“It is further unacceptable that I just learned about this through social media,” he said, according to the Louisville Courier Journal. “We will collect all the facts and take immediate corrective action.”

News of the slideshow came out after protests erupted in Louisville this year after the March death of Breonna Taylor, who was shot by police while they executed a no-knock warrant. 

More demonstrations broke out after a Louisville grand jury announced in September that it would not charge any of the three officers present in connection with her death. One officer was charged on three counts of wanton endangerment for firing bullets into a neighbor’s apartment.