Thursday, June 28, 2007

Police Council Hearing

Kirk Rice, Identifies as the rooster in the room. Discussed General Patton's desire to keep marching into Russia and was stopped. The public safety department has been a "mess" since its inception. First public safety director was the most corrupt person he's met in his life. An officer was sent to federal prison for responding inappropriately to a domestic call at the McNeilly household.

Joanne Witkowski, National Council on Jewish Women (this is the woman I couldn't remember in my first post). As a survivor of childhood intimate violence, she calls on Council to maintain integrity of the police department. Police officers often to not utilize the Employee Assistance Program (EAP). We have to improve the resources. Emphasizes integrity.

Michele Cunko, concerned resident. Council had no role in the promotions, but it is an executive authority. Citizens have a responsibility to say what we do and do not want. We do not want police officers accepting brutal behavior or exhibiting it. We do not want supervisors put in positions to overlook bad behavior b/c they once got away with it. We wish Chief Harper had not made these promotions. These decisions were not in the best interest of the residents of the City. The Mayor needs to rethink appointments and to act. Mistakes have been made and we need to fix them.

PEDUTO speaks to the rules. What is the Mayor's role in the promotion of sargeants and lieutants? And what can we do to rescind them? Civil service rules for competitive roles. Chief gets to pick from the pool and can pass over anyone he chooses. Commander is noncompetitive. Damn. Mayor has no position with regard to competitive. The Mayor would have to pass a resolution to rescind the promotions. I think. This was spoken very low. Sorry, I missed some of it.

Louis Coles. Attorney. Has met all three police officers and worked with them. What seems to be missed here is charges were dropped, no charges were brought and other charges are pending. There is no basis for taking disciplinary action, but that's the fact. Zero tolerance isn't an answer, it is a political slogan. Individuals have the right to face their accusers. No reason to talk about rescinding promotions because these are fine men and good officers. If anything happens at your house, you would be happy to see any of them. The City would implement discipline if there were any reason. There isn't.

Billy Hileman, Lawrenceville resident and City school teacher. Thanked the women for their activism for keeping these issues in the public eye. These officers will be okay if the promotions aren't rescinded. The women's lives will not. 1 in 3 women face violence by an intimate partner. He has three sisters. Violence in families with police officers is 2-3 times greater than the general public. These three men will be okay. What's more important -- the seeming career injustice of these men or the lives of women facing domestic violence every moment of their lives. We need to set a policy where the safety of women are first and the careers of men are second.

Charles Hanlon, represents retired police officers. Police are profoundly impacted by working with women victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. Three officers were promoted on just causes (huh?). Ravenstahl and Harper believe in these three men (huh?). All three are professional men. Recites professional successes of the three men. Uses word professional over and over again. These three men have just been accused, but not convicted. Called the women in the audience "Ladies" ARRRRGGGGGHHHHHHHH.

While the women were cut off, the police representative was not. How's that for business for usual?

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