An Atlanta police officer should lose three days’ pay for strip-searching a college student who had alleged an earlier beating by his partner, a citizen oversight panel said Thursday. The Atlanta Citizen Review Board said it could not corroborate charges of misconduct in the earlier incident, which left the student with two fractured bones in his face. Police said the student reached for an officer’s gun, but board member Rod Edmond wasn’t buying it: “I believe in my heart of hearts these boys got the crap kicked out of them.”
Atlanta police inexplicably waited nine days to question a key witness to officers’ misconduct in the 2006 killing of 92-year-old Kathryn Johnston, according to a new investigative report. Instead, they put on a full-court press to track down an informant who corrupt officers wanted to use as their alibi. Cris Beamud, director of a city oversight panel created after the Johnston shooting, says police should find out why it took so long.
A citizen oversight panel could learn today whether it may compel Atlanta police officers to appear to answer investigators’ questions. The Atlanta Citizen Review Board, at the instigation of member Rod Edmond, may file suit to force officers to cooperate if it does not get subpoena power. Maybe even if it does. UPDATE: On a 13-1 vote, the City Council today granted the board subpoena power and require the police chief to discipline officers who won’t cooperate with it.