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CLAYTON, Mo. (AP) — St. Louis County's embattled police chief says a jury's $20 million verdict in a gay discrimination lawsuit is an opportunity for improvement in his department.

Jon Belmar spoke Tuesday with the St. Louis Post-Dispatch , his first interview since the jury award to Sgt. Keith Wildhaber last month. Wildhaber's lawsuit against Belmar and the department alleged that he had been passed over for a promotion 23 times because he is gay.

Belmar says it doesn't matter if he agrees with the jury's decision. He says he needs to "move forward" and acknowledge "there's room to improve."

Some St. Louis County leaders have called for a police leadership shakeup. Councilwoman Lisa Clancy has said Belmar should resign because of what she described as a "culture of rampant racism and homophobia."

 

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