An Atlanta city councilman who tangled with the city’s ethics officer last year wants to place that job under the council’s control. Lamar Willis‘ proposal calls for the Board of Ethics to give the council three names to consider, rather than just one, to fill a vacancy pending since September. Ethics advocates fear the plan would politicize the appointment process and jeopardize the board’s independence. Former ethics officer Ginny Looney won settlements against Willis and five other council members since 2008
. Willis said his proposal has nothing to do with his $3,500 ethics fine nor his complaint that the board’s case against him was “piling on” and not even “remotely necessary.”
Mayor’s unlicensed brother let go after 2nd traffic stop ATL police oversight director resigns in frustration
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.”
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.
Citizen overseers have called on Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed to ensure that police officers are disciplined if they keep refusing to answer investigators’ questions. But for a start, members of the Citizen Review Board said, Reed could return their calls.
Atlanta’s police oversight board will study charges that officers implicated in the 2006 Kathryn Johnston shooting, and other officers, had arrest quotas and worked extra jobs while on duty. The Citizen Review Board, created two years ago in response to the Johnston case, will also dig deeper into FBI files that suggest other unindicted officers broke the law or departmental rules
Should Atlanta Police Chief Richard Pennington discipline officers who won’t cooperate with a citizen oversight board? We may find out next week, when board members sit down to hash things out with Pennington and Mayor Shirley Franklin.
Atlanta’s police oversight agency could do its work quicker and more effectively if it had direct subpoena power, a human rights advocacy group said in a report issued Monday.
Today, Atlanta City Council members may decide just how far they want to go with independent oversight of their police force. It’s only a work session. But the council’s Public Safety Committee has set aside two whole hours to address a standoff between police officials and a civilian review board that wants access to internal […]