UPDATE! WHO WOULD HAVE GUESSED THERE WOULD BE PROBLEMS WITH McDevitt?? 🙂
This Spokesman Review Story taken from a press release drew very little attention even though it is perhaps one of the most important issues facing Spokane, so here is some truth requiring media follow-up in the wake of revelations regarding Mayor Condon, Frank Straub, and the Spokane Police Department.
In order for this “citizen committee” to have any credibility there must be two very important changes made. James McDevitt and Jon Snyder must be removed not only because their agendas are self-serving, but also based upon their past performance when it comes to Spokane Police Department issues.
James McDevitt and his wife Gretchen are very well-known in the Spokane Community as die-hard Republicans. There is nothing wrong with McDevitt’s political ideology unless it interferes with the interest of the Community as a whole and especially when it comes to picking a new police chief.
Jim McDevitt has been Mayor Condon’s go to person on law enforcement even prior to Condon taking office. Unfortunately McDevitt has no experience when it comes to running a police department and his appointed position as the local United States Attorney added very little. Jim McDevitt after he left office was awarded the position of Council to the Airport Board by the County Commission and City Council after he left the US Attorney’s office and indicated he did not want to go back into private practice. McDevitt was a member of Condon’s original transition team to help Condon with law enforcement issues, other members of Condon’s original law enforcement transition team abandoned him, for a number of reasons including the hiring of Frank Straub.
There are many things the general public is not aware of regarding McDevitt’s involvement in the hiring of Frank Straub. According to sources involved in the process McDevitt was responsible for doing some background on Straub which consisted of simply calling the appointed US Attorney in Indianapolis about Straub.
There are so many unanswered questions regarding McDevitt’s role in picking Frank Straub that have gone unanswered and make his participation on this committee unfathomable.
Just a few examples:
1) Frank Straub’s resume clearly points out that Frank Straub worked for, along with convicted felon Bernie Kerik, in Rudy Giuliani’s private consulting firm. Rudy Giuliani recommended Frank Straub for the jobs Straub he had in NYC, White Plains, and Indianapolis. So the obvious question is given Giuliani’s stature in the Republican Party was there a recommendation to both McDevitt and Condon by Rudy Giuliani to hire Frank Straub?
2) When Frank Straub went before the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Commission to obtain a Commission Waiver Jim McDevitt spoke in Straub’s behalf extolling what he considered Straub’s law enforcement virtues. Why did McDevitt who at the time was aware of Straub’s problems decide to take this action?
3) Jim McDevitt championed the hiring of his friend Selby Smith as an exempt SPD hire to lead all SPD investigations even though Smith’s investigative experience was limited to drugs. When Smith was head of the local DEA McDevitt was the appointed local US Attorney. McDevitt as US Attorney must have known the credibility issues Smith had as it related to some DEA cases including the one reported in this link.
Yet, like he did for Straub, McDevitt went before the WSCJTC extolling Smith’s background and experience. The question again is why?
Just a few background links:
I have documented time and again Jon Snyder’s inept oversight of SPD as Chairman of the Public Safety Committee so there is no sense in going into great detail in the interest of time and space. Jon Snyder’s political aspirations have continually been in the way of legitimate oversight. He along with other Council Members caved to the Guild Contract, Jon Snyder silenced Tim Connor during a PSC meeting when Connor was trying to point out Straub’s “untruthfulness” that has now become so very apparent. Jon Snyder continually took the word of every police administrator that came before the PSC without ever bothering to check the facts even though he was continually provided the facts.
Jim McDevitt and Jon Snyder based upon their history have NO BUSINESS on this “Committee” the committee has to be made up of individuals without agenda and without the stench of past mistakes that have greatly hurt this community.