Police Bureau staff present: Captain Schenck (IAD)
1. Meeting was called to order at by Chair Hector Lopez. A quorum was present.
2. Minutes of the March 18, 2003, meeting were unanimously approved with no amendments.
3. IPR Director’s Report:
CRC members were reminded to submit their parking receipts for reimbursement.
An updated CRC contact list was provided.
Follow-up on appeal no. 2002-C-0022. CRC had returned this investigation to IPR for further intake on two allegations. After further intake investigation, IAD decided to handle as a service complaint. Since officers could not be identified on one of the allegations, a briefing was provided to the entire shift. For the allegation in which an officer was identified, the officer was on extended leave. Now that he has returned to duty, the service complaint has been completed, and the case has been closed.
4. Chair Lopez asked the Director if he has assigned two new CRC members to review appeal no. 02-21. The Director stated that current protocols do not provide for the replacement of the originally appointed reviewers.
[Ric Alexander arrived.]
5. Work Group Reports
Internal Process Work Group (Mia Butzbaugh reporting)
The Meeting of March 20, 2003, involved a quorum of CRC members. Therefore, the minutes of this meeting will be posted on the IPR website when approved.
The Internal Process Work Group is examining the issue of mid-term replacements insofar as the respective duties of the CRC and IPR in this process.
On April 8, 2003 there will be a meeting of the Internal Process Work Group with the City Auditor, the IPR Director, and the Deputy City Attorney to clarify the CRC/IPR duties and responsibilities as specified in the City Code and the IPR/CRC protocols.
Policy Work Group (Denise Stone reporting)
The Policy Work Group is nearing completion of recommendations on the three policy issues they have been working on.
At a future meeting the list of identified policy issues will be presented to the CRC for prioritization.
Outreach Work Group (Héctor López): Nothing to report.
6. Robin Springer, Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office, provided a training session on pretext traffic stops and probable cause. Pretext stops are legal in the State of Oregon . Police officers may conduct traffic stops whenever they have probable cause to believe that a traffic violation occurred, regardless of other reasons that they might have.
In these situations officers may detain citizens for as long as is reasonable to investigate the offense. The “collective knowledge” applies. This means that an officer may base a stop on probable cause established by another officer.
[Toni Jaffe arrived.]
Probable cause is said to exist when it is “more likely than not” that a crime or an offense has been committed.
Ms. Springer gave the following responses to questions of IPR staff and CRC members:
It is legal for police officers to follow vehicles even without having observed suspicious or criminal conduct.
There is no legal restriction on how long an officer may wait after observing an infraction before detaining the driver.
There is no legal requirement for the officer to tell a person why they were pulled over. This is left to the discretion of the officer because every situation is different. This is discussed in the training that officers receive in the police academy.
7. Discussion of IPR rules relating to late filings of appeals.
Director Rosenthal, citing the City Ordinance 3.21.140, that “the Director may adopt rules for permitting late filings,” presented his proposed rules for late filings. He also reviewed the written comments of the Portland Police Association regarding this issue.
[TJ Browning arrived.]
The Director’s proposed protocol would allow for the appointment of two CRC members to review declined appeals for policy issues. In the discussion it was suggested that the CRC assigned members should share the decision-making authority with the Director on declining late appeals. Director Rosenthal agreed to change the language of the proposed protocol to specify that the Director would confer with the appointed CRC members prior to making a decision, but would retain decision-making authority.
The Committee requested that the rule be resubmitted after the wording is changed to reflect the above-noted issue.
8. Discussion of Request for Reconsideration Protocol.
The proposed protocol for “Request for Reconsideration of CRC Decision” was discussed.
Ric Alexander made a motion to strike the words “or considered” from the phrase “based upon information not previously discussed or considered.” TJ Browning seconded. The motion carried 5-3.
Yes: Browning, Alexander, Stone, López, Butzbaugh
No: Miggins, Ueland, Jaffe
Toni Jaffe made a motion to change the time from “90 days” to “60 days.” Hank Miggins seconded. The motion was defeated 5-3.
Yes: Miggins, Ueland, Jaffe
No: Browning, Alexander, Stone, López, Butzbaugh
Mia Butzbaugh made a motion to adopt the proposed protocol with the only change being the removal of the words “or considered.” Ric Alexander seconded. The motion carried 6-2.
Yes: Browning, Alexander, Stone, López, Ueland
No: Jaffe, Miggins
[The Chairperson’s gavel was passed to Denise Stone.]
9. Discussion of CRC and IPR observations of Police Bureau’s response to demonstrations.
Director Rosenthal facilitated this discussion. He was seeking input regarding whether or not there should be some policies on the circumstances in which CRC members or IPR staff serve as observers of police actions. He posed questions of liability, the possible need for CRC members to recuse themselves from a case if they were present as observers, where observers should be located (behind the police lines or with the public), whether to wear some type of identifying clothing such as an IPR windbreaker, etc.
Bob Ueland suggested that anyone serving as an observer should do this only if assigned to do so, not on a free-lance basis. Hank Miggins raised the possibility that there could be some public events that he chooses to attend on his own. Ric Alexander expressed a concern about the potential loss of “independence” if one participates in an event even as an observer. TJ Browning suggested that this issue be tabled until community members are polled to see how they feel about the CRC/IPR serving as observers at public functions. She thought this should be dealt with as an “outreach” issue. Mia Butzbaugh commented that serving as an observer could be seen as part of the training of CRC members, much as a ride-along would be. Denise Stone posed the question of what to do with information that is potentially obtained as an observer. City Auditor Blackmer offered to investigate the city policy on injuries to City volunteers under circumstances such as this. Ric Alexander made a motion to refer this issue to the Outreach Work Group. TJ Browning seconded. The motion carried 4-3, with one abstention.
Yes: Browning, Alexander, Stone, Butzbaugh
No: Miggins, Ueland, Jaffe
10. Submission of Internal Process mission statement for CRC approval.
TJ Browning made a motion to table this matter for discussion at a later date. Bob Ueland seconded. Motion carried, 5-2.
[López left the room prior to the vote.]
Yes: Browning, Stone, Ueland, Butzbaugh, Jaffe
No: Miggins, Alexander
[López returned to the room.]
11. Unscheduled item introduced by Acting Chair Stone: discussion of conference committee meetings.
Mia Butzbaugh presented an argument against holding conference committee meeting. She stated that the City Ordinance 3.21.160 “Hearing Appeals” does not provide for the holding of conference committee meetings after a decision on a finding has been reached by the CRC. She suggested that holding a conference committee meeting represents an additional hurdle for the appellant, adversely affects timely resolution of appeals, and undermines the credibility of the CRC.
TJ Browning questioned whether a CRC member who was not present for the original vote should not be permitted to vote at the conference committee.
Ric Alexander stated that since a conference committee meeting would be held only when the decision is in favor of the citizen, the Police Bureau should have the same consideration that is granted to the citizen, even if this entails an extra hoop.
Director Rosenthal mentioned that if a CRC member misses the hearing, he or she could listen to the tape of the meeting. He reminded the CRC that the Police Bureau has accepted CRC’s recommendations for a change of finding 9 out of 9 times. He stated that the concept of the conference committee is fully consistent with the intent of the City Ordinance and provides a final check on the reasonableness of the recommendation for both the CRC and the Police Bureau.
Hank Miggins stated that the concept of having a conference committee meeting is to resolve the issue at a lower level if possible. Anything that betters the process and the product is of value.
Héctor López stated that the ordinance implicates the City Council in the appeal process. CRC should not be reluctant to go to Council.
Auditor Blackmer expressed the opinion that it benefits the CRC to hear the Police Bureau’s objections to CRC recommendations.
Bob Ueland did not see any problem with “talking about the issues.”
TJ Browning stated that it is not about “winning or losing.” She did not see the need to hear the Police Bureau’s take on recommended changes in findings.
Denise Stone stated that the Police Bureau’s side is heard throughout the hearings process. She agrees that the conference committee is an obstacle. She raised the question about what role the appellant has during a conference committee meeting.
Director Rosenthal stated that the conference committee provides the opportunity to hear from the decision maker.
Mia Butzbaugh made a motion to follow strictly the language in the ordinance as written in 3.21.160 and to eliminate No. 13 and No. 14 from Protocol No. 02-03.
After further discussion, it was decided to follow through with the scheduled conference committee meeting on case no. 02-17 at the April 15 meeting. It was agreed that further discussion of the concept of the conference committee is needed. Mia Butzbaugh withdrew her motion.
Hank Miggins proposed that the CRC’s work plan should include a review of all IPR/CRC protocols.