Art Acevedo at risk of losing Miami police chief gig after turbulent start with department

Commissioners were enraged at a statement in which Acevedo said the Cuban mafia was running the Miami Police Department.

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Monday, September 27, 2021
Former Houston police chief Acevedo now at risk of losing Miami job
Art Acevedo departed Houston just five months ago, but gaffes including invoking the "Cuban mafia" put his Miami job in danger.

MIAMI, Florida (KTRK) -- Former Houston police chief Art Acevedo is in danger of being fired just months into his new job in Miami.

Acevedo left Houston to become the police chief for the Miami Police Department back in April.

Monday, Miami City Commissioners held a special meeting to question Acevedo about his performance in the role.

Commissioners are enraged at a series of removals and hirings by Acevedo. They're also furious over a statement in which he said the Cuban mafia was running Miami's police department, according to a report by WPLG.

On Sept. 9, Acevedo released a statement via Twitter, apologizing for his remarks.

"While the statement was made to be humorous, I have since learned that it is highly offensive to the exile Cuban community, of which I am a proud member. I want to thank the City of Miami Commissioners for kindly informing this morning that historically, the Castro regime referred to the exile community in Miami as 'the Cuban Mafia,'" he wrote. "Suffice it to say, I would have never made the statement and I extend my apologies to our community."

Acevedo was born in Havana, Cuba, but grew up in California.

Commissioners in Miami, specifically Commissioner Joe Carollo, said they want Acevedo to focus on being an administrator and not being "out there at every event."

"I will be darned if I am going to let a new transplant come here and think that he could do whatever the heck he wants to do or say," Carollo said during a meeting earlier this month, WPLG reports.

The commissioners do not have the power to fire Acevedo, but they can issue a vote of no-confidence or removal.

Acevedo's boss is the city manager, who works at the will of commissioners.