Spokane Police Chief Craig Meidl confirmed Friday that the
video of an arrest of a 29-year-old man fleeing police contained evidence of
“policy violations” but denied suggestions his agency was attempting to
downplay the incident.
*** Wait just a second Chief Meidl…now you are saying the
video “contained evidence of policy violations”? The facts are and the records
will show that SPD Use of Force Experts Lt. Boothe, and Sgt. Wheeler after
reviewing the video found that there was “policy violations”, but when moved up
the Chain to Lt. Staben and Major King the SPD’s expert analysis was overruled
as within policy which of course prevented the OPO from knowing about it.
Ellerman’s arrest took place February 12, 2019 over three months ago and now
you have decided to change the finding because I brought it to the attention of
“The mere insinuation that there’s a cover-up, again, puts
me in a position where I want to be able to address that, because that is
inflammatory, and it does a lot of damage,” said Meidl in an interview Friday.
“It doesn’t matter what I can say, until I can say, here’s everything else.”
*** I’m not insinuating anything; I’m stating facts which
you are well aware of Chief Meidl.
Meidl said the two officers are working patrol while the
internal affairs investigation continues. He called the offer for the council
to review the footage after signing a nondisclosure agreement “a compromise”
that was proffered by the Spokane Police Guild in an effort to provide a fuller
picture of the event to lawmakers without trampling the rights of their
*** “Without trampling the rights of their members”… say
what? You just trampled on Dan and Scott Lesser’s rights by publicly stating
that now you have decided there was “policy violations” was that intentional to
put your friends in best position to file a grievance for any discipline that
might come of this. Any Chief knows that you don’t tell the world that Officers
committed “policy violations” prior to an IA Investigation being completed. If
Dan and Scott Lesser committed “policy violations” back on February 12, 2019
how will you explain that they were never disciplined for those “policy
violations” once the public sees the “horrific” Body Camera Video, and
especially when you consider that the IA Investigation didn’t even start until
after May 22, 2019. Beyond that if Ellerman decides to file a lawsuit against
the City and SPD you just gave him exactly what he needs, because as everyone
knows in Civil Rights and Excessive Force Lawsuits the key element is whether
or not the Officers committed “policy violations”.
*** “a compromise”…I guess that just goes to show that the
Police Unions do in fact run SPD and your lack of leadership includes hiding
behind the Unions skirts when transparency is at issue and you are going to
look exceptionally bad. A real leader would have gone public showed the video
to everyone and as they teach you in Law Enforcement Leadership Training
“fee-up and face-up” you sure aren’t showing you have the guts to do that.
“One of the things that I’m trying to do, is avoid the
Spokane Police Department from being a political football,” Meidl said. “The
challenge is, some other people can go out there and talk about it, and they
can talk about it with the information they have, which may or may not be
*** Every piece of my information is accurate, because good
honest Cops, and others give it to me, and I corroborate it, and you know it.
If you are so worried about accuracy let the public see the video and allow
them to decide what is and isn’t accurate.
“Meidl said the two
officers are working patrol”
*** So Chief does that mean Scott Lesser was booted from the
SPD PACT which is another big problem for you and sent back to Patrol or do you
consider PACT part of Patrol?
Since the Officers were accused of turning their BWCs off
and on by Ellerman’s sister will the IA Investigation include questioning about
BWC issues, and are you ever going to look into this Federal Case that was
dismissed because of Dan and Scott Lesser or will Mayor Condon and Teresa
Sanders prevent you from doing what is right and proper because it would ruin
their we are all for and tough on Police Oversight baloney.
Since this was a US Marshal’s Operation are you going to
inform Main Justice and the US Marshals Service in DC what a mess you and your
people have created…after all the Marshals Service does pay all the overtime
for the SPD PACT.
Of course, to actually do a legitimate IA Investigation you
would have to interview the US Marshals involved, but in order to do that you
have to jump through some legal hoops… been there done that I can help you with
how to do it…just give me a call.
Chief Meidl you have screwed this thing up so bad and tried
to cover it up in a real stupid way the only creditable solution is to have
this matter investigated by an independent agency.