The meeting last night of the OPOC clearly demonstrated that
the battle by the Office of Police Ombudsman (OPO) and Office of Police
Ombudsman Commission (OPOC) with Chief Craig Meidl and the Police Guild over
transparency, actually doing internal investigations, and what the OPO
Ordinance actually says may have heated up, and it is all because of Chief
Craig Meidl’s refusal to investigate complaints about the demeanor of SPD
Officer Scott “Batman” Hice’s demeanor toward protesters while on duty working
security for a Cathy McMorris-Rodgers event, even though the OPOC for the first
time ever used their authority under the OPO Ordinance to try and force an
Officer Hice is certainly a part of the “cool kids clique”
and boy can the Officer dance.
I would hope that some of the reporters attending last nights OPOC Meeting found it as interesting as I did because truly there has been ongoing evidence over the years that SPD doesn’t like any kind of legitimate oversight and that evidence started to show when Mayor Condon with City Council approval negotiated away any semblance of legitimate oversight the majority of Spokane Voters wanted by approving changes to the Spokane City Charter. Diligent, Aggressive, and Hard-Working Investigative Reporting has rooted out corruption all over the Country in places like NYC, LA, Las Vegas, Chicago time and time again, even in the White house with the Watergate/Nixon scandal. Seek “Deep-throats” kids!
This story by new to the area and new Inlander Reporter Josh
Kelety is a good start but there needs to be more and each and every Candidate
for City Offices needs to be asked specific and hard-hitting questions about
Police Oversight and the many other problems currently going on at City Hall.
“This will make Spokane a model for civilian police
Okay, so much for the background now what was so interesting
to me about last nights OPOC meeting, aside from re-confirming what I already
knew it became quite obvious the OPO and the OPOC are pissed that Chief Meidl
wrote them a letter on December 14, 2018…yes on Christmas Eve, refusing to
investigate the Batman Case, they were also pissed that Meidl in his letter
trying to justify not adhering to the OPOC’s direction to investigate the case
Meidl conveniently left off the highlighted portion of the Definitions section
It isn’t like it wasn’t very, very, predictable that the issue of what constitutes an OPO Investigation wouldn’t come up on the very first OPO/OPOC demand that SPD conduct an IA Investigation. I knew it would and addressed it back in this 2015 story. It was also inevitable the first case would result in a Guild Grievance and the Batman Case has./There was also discussion of why the Police Advisory Committee (PAC) would kick the OPO and OPOC off the PAC.
The question I have is did someone put PAC Chair Joan Butler up to giving the OPO and OPOC the boot and what will the supplemental emails, etc. show?
You can always tell just how serious Politicians are about
programs by the way they are funded, or not funded. The discussion about
OPO/OPOC finances was enlightening, why in the hell would OPOC Chair Jenny Rose
have to pay her own way to National Association for Civilian Oversight of Law
Enforcement (NACOLE) training, and what is the story about OPO Benefit payments
and the way the City accounts for them?
I’m also curious about what case OPOC lawyer and former City
of Spokane Mayor Dennis Hession’s prearranged meeting with Teresa Sanders is
all about, I think I know but I’m not sure.
I was hoping to shorten this story up by simply providing a
link to last nights audio recorded meeting, but there was a glitch because Mr.
Hession happen to mention Officer Hice’s name during the meeting and they are trying
to figure out how to bleep out Hice’s name, I already knew the Officer in
question was Scott Hice and had lots of confirmation but when you hear the
recording you will note from the audience I blurted out “That’s okay I already
knew!”, I wasn’t being a jerk I just wanted to mark that spot in the recording.
You will also hear at the beginning of the meeting during the public comments
portion me asking several questions. Unfortunately, because local politicians
refuse to respond to my legitimate questions I’m left with limited options to
get to the truth.
As soon as the recording is available I will post a link for
you to listen to and decide for yourself what is going on. This story will of
course be overshadowed by the Officer Involved Shooting Press Conference today,
but it needs reported and has a direct connection to the OIS press conference.