BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – City leaders said Chief Murphy Paul’s work is bridging the gap in the community. They said it’s something that shouldn’t go unnoticed.

Since he’s already planning to step away next month, they said rushing his departure would be a mistake.

“We call on the very council members who are asking for his resignation or termination to retract those requests,” Dr. S.C. Dixon, Reverend Greater Mount Olive Missionary Baptist Church said.

“One thing we say we desperately need is transparent leaders who talk in uncomfortable conversations,” Anthony Kenny, 100 Black Men said.

Community members spoke out in support of BRPD Police Chief Murphy Paul who was emotional during a metro council meeting last Wednesday.

Following last Wednesday’s meeting, several people called for Paul to resign including Metro Council Member Denise Amoroso. She called his actions “unacceptable.”

Emotions were high at Monday’s gathering as Paul defended his service and approach.

“It made me realize with all of the progress that we’ve made how much more work we have to do. There are still some who only see an angry Black man, I don’t apologize for my passion,” Paul said.

During the ongoing investigation into the department’s “Brave Cave” scandal, Paul said fourteen officers were fired and eight resigned.

City leaders including Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome said they think Paul has handled the controversy well.

“Murphy Paul is the chief of the Baton Rouge Police Department. I’ve always had your back and I’m going to continue to have your back,” Broome said.

Paul will step down has head of the BPRD in November. Until then, people speaking on Monday said they have a simple message for him.

“Chief Murphy Paul, the young people in the community stand behind you,” Kenny said.