This story is somewhat of a teaser for another story I am working on that ultimately involves our local criminal justice and law enforcement systems, but given this is a Presidential Election year and a lot of questions regarding the two front runners have come up I thought my readers both Liberal and Conservative alike would be interested in some of the things I’m finding as they relate to the national scene.

Please keep in mind that I don’t have a political ideology and could care less which group my stories might rub the wrong way. Also keep in mind that the story I am working on involves individuals that are on opposite sides of the political spectrum yet maintain a close relationship and both were involved in the River Park Square Case. You in all likelihood will not find other local media outlets covering this…but I will.

This SR story might give you some clues as to where I’m headed.




The story I’m working on involves a lot of document analysis, interviews and good old gumshoe so it will take some time and of course some players will refuse to grant interviews.


In reviewing documents, I ran across this which immediately struck me in light of the ongoing FBI Investigation of Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton. This is a mere snippet of the documents available, and the documents in the link are lengthy but I wanted to provide them so you can draw your own conclusions as to whether or not the threat of criminal charges was an effort to intimidate. Criminal charges, by the way were never filed. I should also note that the Government fought to have documents like this excluded from the court file, however the Judge in the case decided they should be. IMO it is obvious why the Government didn’t want the documents public.

Charges Bolton





When you weigh what is alleged Hilary Clinton did in comparison to what is alleged Bolton did in this case…boy you have to wonder.


Lots more to come!




Perhaps the most important thing the community, including our elected leadership, should have learned is just how poorly lead the Spokane Police Department has been and continues to be as well as why at this point it is impossible for SPD to fulfill the recommendations of the Use of Force Commission or COPS/DOJ.

Just a little Background:



I want to start by reiterating that the Gately obstruction case was a tough one for Deputy Prosecutor Stefanie Collins to prove BEYOND A REASONABLE DOUBT. The case was your typical circumstantial evidence case which hinged on a conversation between Gately and Ennis in which only two people really know what was said and was complicated by Gately’s role as Guild President and the handling by SPD Leadership. The fact is, that conversation should never ever have taken place, and it was Jim McDevitt’s guy Assistant Chief Selby Smith that allowed it to happen. Collins was able, according to news reports, to convince four jurors there was no reasonable doubt, and eight others felt there was. Any IA Investigator worth their salt responsible for conducting the IA Investigation of Gately would make every effort to interview all twelve jurors, and it will be interesting to see if that IS done (explanation to follow).


Over and over there have been cases where SPD Cops have been tipped by other Cops regarding both criminal and internal affairs cases, most of the tipping was done by Guild Representatives. The most notable case was of course the Karl Thompson case in which some SPD Cops admitted in Grand Jury testimony that they were telling Thompson what was going on with the SPD “investigation” every step of the way. The Gately case makes it quite obvious that SPD Leadership under the Condon/Straub Administration did absolutely nothing to change the learn and tell culture of the SPD.



For the Cops and SPD Leadership, as well as the Elected Officials, that read my stories pay attention to this section. You won’t like it but it is FACT!

1) An SPD “employee accused of criminal conduct shall be provided with all rights and privileges afforded to any other person under the law.”. But as the Gately case shows SPD Leadership provided Gately and Ennis far more privileges than the law, policy manual, or Guild Contract affords, and far beyond what any other person would be afforded.

2) There is NOTHING anywhere in the SPD Policy Manual, or the Guild Contract which affords a SPD Cop the right or privilege of being informed by a union representative, or anyone else that they are the subject of a confidential criminal or administrative investigation during the evidence gathering process. Doing so is a clear violation of standard investigative practice, ethical behavior, and SPD’s own policy.

3) “If the nature of the allegations dictate that confidentiality is necessary to maintain the integrity of the investigation, the involved employee(s) need not be notified of the pending investigation unless and until the employee is interviewed.”

SPD Policy Manual:


Every investigator or supervisor assigned to investigate a personnel complaint shall proceed

with due diligence. Recognizing that factors such as witness availability and the complexity of

allegations will affect each case, every effort should be made to complete each investigation as

required by Collective Bargaining Agreements. If the nature of the allegations dictate that

confidentiality is necessary to maintain the integrity of the investigation, the involved employee(s) need not be notified of the pending investigation unless and until the employee is interviewed. All cases are entered and routed using Blue Team.


4) “Professional Courtesy”, which is the practice of one law enforcement executive informing an executive of another agency that his/her agency is investigating one of their cops, should not be extended until absolutely necessary, and ONLY after as much evidence as possible is collected.


5) NO COP has a right to have a union representative made aware of a pending search warrant, or have a union representative present during the execution of a search warrant


I could go on but five is enough for now…let’s see how the IA Case turns out. If I were the County Cop investigating the Gately case, there would be hell to pay and when the City’s IA Case was made public and my interview transcript read, the Oz Man would be making a new graveyard Detective position.




It is very plain…they can’t keep their mouths shut!


For some background you might want to read this.




One of the good things I feel came from the Meidl/Lundgren Q & A is that despite the tension that exists between the SR and myself, Rachel Alexander I feel is beginning to understand why I asked the pointed questions of both Meidl and Lundgren and why they were important for the community to get answered.


RA Q and A



Both Rachel and Mitch Ryals will remember that I confronted Lundgren with the fact that SPD has made NO EFFORT to follow the UOFC, and the COPS/DOJ recommendations that SPD run parallel IA investigations with criminal cases. Lundgren’s explanation was to blame the prosecutor’s office for not having a separate Professional Standards Unit, therefore the prosecutor could not guarantee that information from the IA Case would not be passed on to the criminal prosecutor causing a “fruit of the poisonous tree” problem.



I think both Rachel and Mitch were surprised when I agreed to an extent with Lundgren…but not because of a lack of a PSU in the prosecutor’s office, which was of course was BS (S=Stuff). Although a PSU in the prosecutor’s office would be great, and was on the Breean Beggs to do list, the truth is, and the Gately case proves my point…it is impossible under the current Administration to prevent cops from talking and tipping, the culture is so ingrained no matter who the next Chief of Police is it will take at least two years and some harsh discipline to change the way they are. Rachel and Mitch will also recall that Lundgren made the mistake of trying to allude to his training in observing LAPD’s OIS process, which may have worked had not someone who is very, very familiar with LAPD’s process not been in the room.




The answer is…” Who the hell knows?”


Anyone that has followed SPD IA cases knows that the end result entirely depends on who the cop or employee is, and that is why it was so important to obtain on the record for another time exactly what standard or burden of proof is required to determine if the evidence shows a cop done wrong.

As Rachel pointed out in her comment above, and I have pointed out a number of times, there is NO written burden of proof standard for SPD, unlike nearly every other law enforcement agency in the nation. Consequently, there is NO accountability to the public for the people that make discipline decisions. Aside from my forcing a recorded, and witnessed answer regarding the burden SPD uses there are other public statements SPD Administrators have made that clearly state the burden SPD uses is “Clear and Convincing Evidence”, so I hope no one would try to play the Brian, Rachel, and Mitch misunderstood game (fair warning).


A clear and convincing burden of proof means that the evidence presented must be highly and substantially more probable to be true than not. It must demonstrate a greater degree of believability than the preponderance of evidence burden and is one step below the beyond a reasonable doubt burden.

Is the clear and convincing burden used in all SPD IA cases? Hell No it isn’t! The Arleth Furniture-gate case is proof positive that it isn’t, and that is just one of many examples where the who you are and what you have done or haven’t done comes into play, which will make the Gately outcome interesting.

The question the public and the media should be asking is why SPD refuses to document their burden of proof. I of course would ask but for some reason no one at SPD or the Condon Administration will give me an interview so we will have to rely on other media outlets to ask the hard pointed questions.


I am going to throw in a few more examples from other Departments at this point just for the heck of it, you can find more yourself if you are interested.



Spokane Police Department


Not Sustained – When the investigation discloses that there is insufficient evidence to sustain the complaint or fully exonerate the employee.


Sustained – When the investigation discloses sufficient evidence to establish that the act occurred and that it constituted misconduct.



Other Departments


Upon completion of the investigative report, the investigator will include a recommendation of

finding for each allegation in the investigation report based on the preponderance of evidence.

The investigator’s recommended findings will be reviewed through the chain of command,

and the Chief of Police will determine a finding of disposition for each allegation based on the

preponderance of evidence as follows:


(c) Sustained – The investigation disclosed sufficient evidence that the act occurred and that

it did constitute misconduct.

(d) Not-Sustained – The investigation established that there is not sufficient evidence to either

sustain the allegation or to fully exonerate the employee. This includes situations in which

the reporting party and/or witness(es) fail to cooperate in disclosing information needed to

further the investigation, or they are no longer available.


***I’m throwing this one in for the benefit of other media outlets if they are interested. SPD went through the same process as Bremerton did and the SPD Report is available via PRR.


Loaned Executive Management Assistance (LEMAP) Report for the Bremerton Police Department

Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs (WAPSC)

14.2 All complaints of misconduct must be investigated, not sustained findings should be the exception and not the rule, and must be based on all available evidence and a preponderance of the evidence standard.







WHAT HAPPENS IF THE IA CASE OF GATELY LEADS TO DISCPLINE?? (I’m throwing this in for a follower)

Who the hell knows!


SPD has NO “Discipline Matrix” like other Departments do so there is no telling what will happen or any way of telling if Golden Boys/Gals got special treatment. I’m sure by now Meidl and McDevitt know some dastardly citizen suggested they better get one so we don’t end up with more inexplicable Lydia Taylor cases.


*** Special note to my Irish Friend Fuller!

Fuller Behave


You sound like some of my old supervisors…it didn’t work for them either! If I were to “Behave” all the time and play by the PC rules…you wouldn’t be reading this! BTW…it ain’t always me. 🙂 🙂














Not the guys and gals in uniform, but the Community Oriented Policing Services program which was established here in Spokane back in 1991 when I was on the job. A program that became a national model as a method for involving a community in crime prevention.


The COPS Story


In 1991, two young girls were abducted from their neighborhood in Spokane’s West Central area. One was found dead, the other has never been found. The shocking crimes brought West Central residents together and they were determined to find ways to make their children and homes safer. The meetings included representatives from the Police Department, Spokane Public Schools, the city’s Human Services Department, West Central Community Center, and the Washington State University (W.S.U.) Cooperative Extension Service. After months of meetings, these groups, police officers, and citizens from the neighborhood created C.O.P.S. West.

The police-trained citizen volunteers take reports, gather information about possible drug houses, and become effective crime fighters. A merchant donated a building at Elm and Boone, and volunteers renovated it. A governing board was created with the involvement of scores of residents. The volunteers established a schedule to keep the center open daily. Police officers use the location to write reports, meet with residents, and afford a visible presence. Since the establishment of C.O.P.S. West, there are now a total of 12 neighborhoods that have opened their own C.O.P.S. substations. In each neighborhood where a C.O.P.S. substation is operating, it becomes a focal point for citizen involvement. We hope, eventually, most Spokane neighborhoods will have their own variation of a C.O.P.S. Shop, staffed by trained volunteers who take an active part in their own community safety.





Recent news articles have reported that Mayor Condon attempted to bully his way through a meeting regarding COPS that was supposed to be about “the police department’s Youth Police Initiative and Spokane Police Activities League, but veered into food donations from Spokane Public Schools for the youth outreach programs and Condon’s opinions on COPS volunteers”. Condon subsequently made a half-hearted public apology for his conduct.

Condon isn’t the only individual that has tried to bully leaders of COPS into doing what SPD wanted them to do. Frank Straub did the same thing, only Straub on the occasions he tried it ran into to the wrong COPS leader and when the Straub realized his usual bullying tactics weren’t going to work he transformed from bully to meek and mild.

Since COPS inception in 1991 there has always been an issue regarding the extent of involvement SPD should have in the independent COPS program. Since COPS must rely on funding from the City, as well as the donations they receive, it has always been a balancing act for COPS leadership to maintain the necessary COPS independence while at the same time working closely with SPD.

The meeting in question was intended to be about two of Condon and Straub’s highly touted SPD pet programs YPI and SPAL for which there is ZERO legitimate analysis of their worth to the Community. The meeting in question of course was all about MONEY. If COPS was utilized as a conduit to fund SPD programs the Mayor wouldn’t have to worry about YPI and SPAL being cut during the normal budget process by the City Council since the majority of Council Members strongly support the longstanding and successful COPS program.


It isn’t at all surprising that the Mayor would offer “opinions on COPS volunteers”, those opinions as I understand it weren’t very positive, and the reason they weren’t may be tied to complaints he has received from some regarding Condon and Straub’s disastrous and costly “Precinct Model”. Some of those complaints include the fact that cops are not always available at the precincts even during the day and simply leave a note on the door saying they are out. That fact has been related to me on more than one occasion by different people. In one case of the cases related to me there was a sign on the door of the Downtown SPD Precinct stating they were gone but the truth was despite the sign on the door there were actually two women police officers inside. In another case at the North Precinct an individual went there twice both times finding a note on the door saying all the cops were gone even though the individual heard what they thought was someone inside. The individual ended up going to the COPS Shop located directly across the street where they were told this was standard practice at the North Precinct.


Here is something you will read here first! An agreement has been made between COPS and SPD to move the COPS Shop which was across the street from the North Precinct into the Precinct, which in my view is just one element of proof Condon and Straub’s highly touted “Precinct Model” is a failure.


The North Precinct building was of course purchased from a retired cop, remodeled at great expense to us, opened with great fanfare by now acting Chief Craig Meidl, yet the public has NO IDEA, WHAT, IF ANY, impact this precinct has had on reducing crime or whether it is in the least bit cost effective.




The reason COPS is a big threat to the Mayor and the current SPD administration is simple, with all of the various COP Shops located throughout Spokane, which are the product of neighborhoods getting together and working their butts off to make them happen and work, why has the City spent so much money on a Precinct Model when ALL of the infrastructure was already in place, had been very successfully utilized in the past, and was a national model for other communities.






Mayor Condon knows full well others besides myself are beginning to ask the same questions, for which he has NO LEGITIMATE ANSWERS. As has been reported in other media the Mayor and SPD are moving away from the Condon/Straub “Precinct Model”.


“Unwinding one of former chief Frank Straub’s signature achievements, the Spokane Police Department is no longer pursuing a plan to create decentralized police precincts.”




Pretty obvious to most that the problem for the Mayor is to find a way out of his failed programs without it having an effect on his political aspirations beyond the Mayor of Spokane.


We all are aware of the infamous “Furniture-Gate Case” involving the Downtown Precinct where a Police Administrator, Captain Brad Arleth, finally stood up to the Condon Administration and actually told the truth, something the likes of Tracy Meidl, Justin Lundgren, and Sarah Lynds are apparently fearful of doing. But if there isn’t a way to fund one of Tracy Meidl’s gravy positions at SPD it is understandable why her interruption of events might be bias. Of course Arleth had to suffer the inevitable bullying consequences from the Condon Administration, which have still not been resolved. Arleth of course in standing up to the Condon Administration knowingly took himself out of the running as the new SPD Chief…that I admire. Interestingly although there have been no internal candidates for the Chief of Police position I learned that the City Council, who actually have the last say in who is hired, MAY ask Mayor Condon to hire Arleth… that of course could be an interesting battle if it takes place especially given Condon’s refusal to invoke Garrity with the cops who are witnesses in the Cotton/Straub case. Arleth is well respected in the community and with the majority of cops at SPD.



I am still waiting to hear back from some folks on this story whose information may or may not add to the story, if it adds to the story I will update.




















More False Accusations from Sled!

Of course anyone can make up anything they want to on the Spokesman Review Comments Section, and many people do, the SR Staff allows it and deletes people who try and rebut false accusations that are made by some who try and get people to think they are the victims of something, of course that is the SR’s choice it is their website, but when someone makes several false allegations like the one below there comes a time when someone has to put a stop to it.


To be clear I did make a call to Andrew’s place of employment this AM and spoke with Ms. Gumere to obtain contact information for the right folks to handle the situation. Sometimes you just have to put aside how innocent young kids might be affected and just do the right thing.


I wanted to report this before Andrew comments on his favorite website claiming I called twice to harass him.

Garland Tavern Call

Response to Sled Garland

Andrew even went so far as to falsely accuse me of calling other peoples work.

Not the only one called at work