NOW DO WE KNOW WHO WASN’T TELLING THE TRUTH? (Follow-up story)

This is a follow-up story to my previous story linked below.

https://examplepro.me/2021/03/25/someone-aint-telling-the-truth/

Background:

Well over two years ago I received information from sources that former SPD Lt. Dave McCabe received Special Treatment from the City of Spokane and the Spokane Police Department after he bilked taxpayers out of a considerable amount of money when he became addicted to opiates and forged documents associated with his addiction. The Special Treatment sources were referring to was that unlike the average Citizen McCabe was never charged with a crime, his conduct was never reported to the Spokane County Prosecutor for inclusion on the Prosecutors “Brady List” and SPD was making every effort to keep the facts associated with the case from the Public.

https://examplepro.me/2021/02/21/same-battle-different-battleground/

https://examplepro.me/2021/02/21/same-battle-different-battleground/https://examplepro.me/2020/12/20/the-cover-up-is-always-worse-than-the-crime/

https://examplepro.me/2020/12/19/the-mysterious-case-of-public-records-request-c000679-061319/https://examplepro.me/2016/09/04/how-government-plays-the-public-records-game/

https://examplepro.me/2020/12/20/the-cover-up-is-always-worse-than-the-crime/https://examplepro.me/2020/12/19/the-mysterious-case-of-public-records-request-c000679-061319/

https://examplepro.me/2016/09/04/how-government-plays-the-public-records-game/

Ever since I was asked to get to the facts of the “Cotton/Straub Affair” and did so, I receive information from sources who want the Public to know the truth and expect me to look into their information something the local MSM don’t do for some reason and the McCabe case is but one example.

The City of Spokane will battle tooth and nail to keep embarrassing facts from the Public eye, and especially if those facts provide some insight into the Culture associated with Mayor Nadine Woodward’s Administration including her Police Department, something I have experience since I started this Gig.

https://documentcloud.adobe.com/link/track?uri=urn:aaid:scds:US:77be8cf7-ed99-4328-91ea-8d10802a73f8

https://documentcloud.adobe.com/link/track?uri=urn:aaid:scds:US:89ae25cf-9376-44d8-a5f2-178510fb6d42

Looking into the McCabe case has demonstrated just how far Woodward’s Administration is willing to go to hide the facts and includes a “Declaration” signed under the penalty of perjury by City Attorney Michael Ormsby.

Ormsby’s under oath declaration was made in response to my appeal to City Hearing Examiner Brian McGinn of this redaction in the McCabe IA report.

As you can clearly see Ormsby emphatically denies under oath that he as City Attorney makes criminal charging decisions (“I do not make criminal charging decisions.)

Certainly, the position of the Spokane Police Department is contrary to Ormsby’s statement under oath.

What is even more telling in my mind is Hearing Examiner Brian McGinn’s statement in his decision that the City of Spokane’s redactions were proper wherein he stated, “The e-mails in question are not subject to disclosure on the grounds that they constitute or are related to a prosecutorial decision.”

https://documentcloud.adobe.com/link/track?uri=urn:aaid:scds:US:c81d1f4a-4a84-486f-96ba-1dc3abb395d1

To me at least it seems clear that City Attorney Michael Ormsby did in fact make a decision not to prosecute McCabe although he denies doing so under oath. Another question that comes to mind is whether or not City Attorney Ormsby violated the Lawyers Rules of Professional Conduct, and or the City of Spokane Ethics Code something that I feel is very troubling.

Story Images:

https://documentcloud.adobe.com/link/track?uri=urn:aaid:scds:US:f57119e3-800d-4b91-9a42-d60aa2934875

I REPORT YOU DECIDE!

SOMEONE AIN’T TELLING THE TRUTH!!!

My long battle (well over a year now) with the City of Spokane and SPD to be transparent with the Public about the termination of former SPD Lt. and former President of the SPD Lieutenants and Captains Association, David McCabe who retired in lieu of termination in June of 2018 has resulted in some new twists.

Although most local reporters have little or no interest in getting to the truth about things going on at SPD, my position is the Public has a right to know and someone has to do the tedious work of trying to get to the truth.

For those that aren’t aware Lt. Dave McCabe while on SPD became addicted to morphine that addiction and other issues it appears to have cost the taxpayers a considerable amount of money, yet someone made the decision not to prosecute the criminal conduct involved as would likely happen to most Citizens who perpetrated the same conduct.

The new twist came when I appealed the redactions made in the McCabe IA Case which took me well over a year to obtain and the City made every effort to hide from the Public.

https://documentcloud.adobe.com/link/track?uri=urn:aaid:scds:US:cc0f4215-95ed-43ee-9ddf-5d1e41f0fb59

For folks that aren’t aware when someone submits a Public Records Request, and they receive heavily redacted documents the City of Spokane process is that the requestor can appeal the redactions to the City of Spokane Hearing Examiner to review and make a finding whether or not the redactions are appropriate based upon Washington State Law. The requestor can bypass the Hearing Examiner process and appeal directly to Spokane County Superior Court, but I think most lawyers would advise that it is best to exhaust all options available in the Government established process before filing in Superior Court. Once the appeal is made by the requestor to the Hearing Examiner the City Division involved will provide the Hearing Examiner with an always lengthy justification as to why the redactions should remain. In my appeal Ms. Mary Muramatsu who works for City Attorney Mike Ormsby in the role of legal advisor to SPD one again did just that as she has in other appeals.

https://documentcloud.adobe.com/link/track?uri=urn:aaid:scds:US:b838cee3-ea6e-421d-bea4-84c6d4830363

https://documentcloud.adobe.com/link/track?uri=urn:aaid:scds:US:6a9122d3-9537-49f4-af0c-cf30423d83fa

The twist or at least interesting aspect in the documents submitted to the Hearing Examiner is City Attorney Michael Ormsby’s declaration under oath.

The problem I’m having with Mr. Ormsby’s declaration under oath is that it sure seems to contradict his duties which are outlined in RCW 35.23.111 which specifically states, “all legal matters pertaining to the business of the city” and seems to be in conflict with the City of Spokane’s own description of what the City Attorney is responsible for and which includes this language “and prosecutes all criminal misdemeanor cases, infractions and code violations on behalf of the city.”

You might notice in the image below that City Attorney Michael Ormsby oversees two divisions “The Office consists of the civil division and the prosecution division.”, which is the same structure as Spokane County Prosecutor Larry Haskell oversees.

Having dealt with many Prosecuting Authorities including the City of Spokane Attorneys and Spokane County Prosecutors I know darn good and well if you want a case charged that involves a Law Enforcement Officer you have to go right to the top guy/gal.

There sure as heck seems to be some conflicting issues with City Attorney Ormsby and Chief Meidl’s people since on several occasions SPD has reported that the City Attorney “did not wish to move forward with criminal charges.”

Maybe we will be able to clear this whole thing up…but I’m not holding my breath.

Story Images:

https://documentcloud.adobe.com/link/track?uri=urn:aaid:scds:US:cda2479c-eec1-4848-b81f-b8ad157ef111

I REPORT YOU DECIDE!

SAME BATTLE DIFFERENT BATTLEGROUND!!!

“As a proponent of restorative justice, Robinson hopes to bring accountability to the commission and law enforcement.”

I always thought Mr. Robinson was a pretty reasonable person and offered quite a bit in the way of police oversight at the local Spokane level, of course what he offered really didn’t get things fixed but he gave it his best shot.

I think he could find his new battleground is perhaps even more frustrating than his most recent one, as he realizes just how powerful the Law Enforcement Lobby is in Washington State, but the important thing is that he maintains a very open dialog with the media and the public in his new position and points out what he perceives as problems at the State level with law enforcement oversight.

If Mr. Robinson wants to help “bring accountability” to the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Commission he might want to take a close look at their Revocation/De-Certification Process, a flawed process which is almost never covered by local Spokane MSM, but often is in other media markets.

https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/times-watchdog/fired-but-still-a-cop-how-the-state-decertification-process-leaves-troubled-officers-with-their-guns/

Examples of the flawed Revocation Process are almost endless. Most won’t even remember how long it took to revoke Karl Thompson’s license to be a Cop in Washington State.

https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/spokane-wash-police-officer-convicted-civil-rights-and-obstruction-violations-connection

More recently take a look at the case of former SPD Officer and convicted rapist Gordon Ennis, who has yet to have his license to be a Cop revoked.

https://www.spokesman.com/stories/2018/aug/24/former-spokane-police-sgt-gordon-ennis-sentenced-t/

https://www.cjtc.wa.gov/certification/certification-hearings

Then there is the question of whether or not law enforcement agencies actually submit the proper documents to the WSCJTC and whether the reason for terminations is properly reported.

https://examplepro.me/2019/03/27/knezovichs-command-staff-directs-deputy-steven-n-stipe-to-commit-perjury/

The case I’m investigating, and Mayor Woodward along her Chief Craig Meidl does not want the public to know about will be interesting from the standpoint of if and when former SPD Lieutenant Dave McCabe’s termination for dishonesty and falsifying medical records was reported to the WSCJTC even though he was terminated in 2018. It seems pretty clear that at least as of January 27, 2021 Spokane County Prosecutor Larry Haskell wasn’t aware of McCabe’s dishonesty, or for some reason McCabe was never placed on Haskell’s list of Brady Cops.

https://documentcloud.adobe.com/link/track?uri=urn:aaid:scds:US:4dc3c3da-c79c-4889-a06c-b6414b99e810

Story Images:

https://documentcloud.adobe.com/link/track?uri=urn:aaid:scds:US:1087b9b2-6c62-4180-b535-8ceb773221cc

Well Good Luck Mr. Robinson you will need it!!!

WHAT THE PUBLIC DOESN’T KNOW WON’T HURT US!!!

“US” of course meaning government agencies including the City of Spokane. This story is about one of the most recent examples of the City of Spokane and the Woodward Administration not wanting the Public to know secret stuff, and part of my job is to let the real story be told.

When an Investigative Reporter receives information from very credible sources that the hire of new Assistant Fire Chief for the Spokane Fire Department was one of those “Good ole boy/girl” things to do someone a favor, and that the hired person won’t last long it is something which should be looked into and the Public made aware of, especially when you consider that sources also tell you that not hiring another Battalion Chief has resulted in ridiculous payments in overtime for a select few.

So, I made an effort to look into some recent hires including the somewhat under-reported hire of Julie O’Berg as the SFD Deputy Chief of Operations using one of the options available which is one of those dreaded Public Records Requests knowing full well the Woodward Administration would continue the same lack of transparency her predecessor David Condon was noted for. The Spokesman Review story linked below, and the images will provide some background.   

https://www.spokesman.com/stories/2017/nov/20/spokane-fire-department-hires-new-assistant-chief/

https://www.spokesman.com/stories/2019/jan/22/spokane-fire-assistant-chief-trisha-wolford-chief-/

It would be hard to dispute the fact that Brian Schaeffer has a strong connection to the Kansas City area and might even be a Kansas City Royals fan like Rob Curley and Kip Hill from the Spokesman Review.

Speaking of Kip Hill some might remember that Condon’s hire of Brian Schaeffer was controversial much like his hiring of Craig Meidl. If you read his story you will find an email from none other, then Meghann Steinolfson pumping Schaeffer’s tires who always plays a prominent role in Public Records Requests when it comes to the Fire Department and the Police Department, as she does in the Public Records I received looking into this matter at hand. Mayor Woodward is aware of the “romantic relationship” between Steinolfson and Schaeffer’s Deputy Fire Chief of Support Services Jay Atwood which is documented in Public Records I have requested and have been waiting for a long time to receive from the City of Spokane. I must assume despite the fact that Steinolfson is heavily involved in union negotiations with the Fire Department and Police Unions Woodward doesn’t believe that the “romantic relationship” is a conflict.

https://www.spokesman.com/stories/2017/may/11/email-from-city-hall-urges-fire-department-brass-t/

When I do PRRs it never fails that an issue other than what I’m investigating comes to light, as it did in this case. The issue I’ve identified is should the Public know the extent of involvement of private law firms which the taxpayers pay for in the in the City of Spokane’s day to day business. The Public Records clearly identify that the Summit Law Firm and Lawyer Elizabeth (Beth) Kennar is deeply involved and her name just keeps coming up. I wonder why our highly paid and benefited City Attorney’s Office can’t handle the light work. As the images below demonstrate the Summit Law Firm via Beth Kennar even help out department heads write widely disseminated “Chief’s Messages”, something one would think they could do for themselves.

It becomes quite obvious that Mayor Woodward and the City of Spokane really don’t want the Public to know the truth, but that is just SOP.

https://documentcloud.adobe.com/link/track?uri=urn:aaid:scds:US:bb2a29b0-8888-4f82-948d-c38d61c4206f

STORY IMAGES:

https://documentcloud.adobe.com/link/track?uri=urn:aaid:scds:US:a5b040d9-0ca2-4be9-a28e-5d99397b45dd

The Battle Continues!!!