Citizen Review Committee
January 13, 2010
Date Approved: February 10, 2010
Meeting Location: Lovejoy Room, Portland City Hall
CRC Members Present: Michael Bigham (Chair), Jeffrey Bissonnette, Loren Eriksson, Hank Miggins, Ayoob Ramjan, Lewellyn Robison, Rochelle Silver, Jamie Troy
City staff: LaVonne Griffin-Valade (City Auditor), Mary-Beth Baptista (IPR Director), Constantin Severe (IPR Assistant Director), Michael Hess (IPR Deputy Director); Shannon Callahan (Commissioner Saltzman’s Office), Linly Rees (Deputy City Attorney)
Police Bureau: Commander Michael Crebs (Detective Division), Captain Ed Brumfield (IAD)
Community/Media: Dan Handelman (Portland CopWatch), Regina Hannon (Portland CopWatch), Debbie Aiona (League of Women Voters), Kelly Krohn, Lindsey Detweiler (CRC nominee), Maxine Bernstein (The Oregonian), several other community members
I. Chair Bigham called the meeting to order at 5:30 pm.
II. Introductions and welcome.
III. Appeal Hearing for Appeal #2009-X-0004 (IPR #2008-C-0150)
Mr. Bissonnette stated that he was present during the entire initial hearing and has reviewed the file. He chose to participate in tonight’s hearing.
Mr. Troy and Mr. Ramjan stated that they had not reviewed the file for tonight’s hearing and would not participate or vote in tonight’s hearing.
Commander Crebs stated that he reviewed the additional investigative materials and decided not to change the findings.
The appellant asked if anyone had reviewed the photographs of his son’s injuries that he had provided.
Mr. Bissonnette responded that he asked about the photographs and was informed that they could not be used as evidence of injury because there was no documentation of when the photographs were taken.
Mr. Eriksson made a motion to affirm the Police Bureau’s finding of Unproven on Allegation #1. Ms. Robison seconded. Mr. Handelman provided public comment. The motion passed unanimously.
Mr. Miggins made a motion to affirm the Police Bureau’s finding of Exonerated on Allegation #2. Ms. Silver seconded. The motion passed, 5-1.
Yes: Bigham, Eriksson, Miggins, Robison, Silver
Policy Issues: CRC members agreed that IAD and IPR need to continue to improve investigations and strive to find and interview all witnesses.
IV. Approval of Minutes of 12/15/09 CRC Meeting. Mr.Eriksson made a motion to approve the minutes. Mr.Bissonnette seconded. Motion passed unanimously.
V. Director’s Report (Director Baptista)
IPR Work Plan: CRC New Member Orientation sessions are planned for January 22, February 1, and February 26.
Community Outreach: Community Outreach Coordinator Irene Konev attended Colored Pencils Arts and Culture Night, African Women’s Coalition Annual Gathering and Coffee and Issues Networking Event. Ms. Konev hosted the Mayor’s Public Advocate Amy Stevens and Commissioner Saltzman’s Public Advocate Stacy Brewster in meetings with IPR staff to streamline calls about commendations and complaints. She also met Outside In, a homeless youth support organization and Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization’s Youth Transitions Project. She presented to directors of Hispanic organizations at the Hispanic Services Roundtable meeting. Self Enhancement Services gave Ms. Konev a tour of its facility and programs and began networking for future presentations to the youth and community this organization serves. She also met with Tina Alexander, Willamette MBA director of MBA professionals, for future networking connections. Ms. Konev also coordinated the CRC New Member Orientation.
IPR and IAD Caseload Data \
Status of Pending Appeals:
IPR #2006-C-0475 / Appeal #2009-X-0005. CRC requested that IAD conduct additional investigation in this case. IAD submitted a memo to IPR on 12/11/09 detailing their efforts. At the 12/16/09 CRC meeting, CRC requested that IPR obtain the transcripts of the testimony of the civilian witnesses during the federal court trial since IAD was unable to reach them despite their efforts. The transcripts were ordered and made available to the CRC members for review on 1/4/10. New CRC members and those members not present at the 11/17/09 CRC meeting may not participate in the appeal of this case unless they have reviewed all of the materials AND the 11/17/09 investigative case review. IPR purchased the Flying Focus Video (DVD) of the investigative case review for CRC review.
IPR #2007-C-0335 / Appeal #2009-X-0006. The IPR and IAD case files are available for CRC review. The investigative case review will be held on 2/10/10. Depending on the outcome of that hearing, the appeal will be heard at the 3/10/10 CRC meeting.
IPR #2009-C-0125 / Appeal #2009-X-0007 and IPR #2009-C-0033 / Appeal #2009-X-0008. Timely appeals have been filed on these cases. The dates of the appeal hearings have yet to be determined. They will be scheduled once the pending appeals have been completed.
VI. CRC Chair’s Report (Chair Bigham)
Formation of new CRC workgroups: It has been brought to Mr. Bigham’s attention that there is no consistent protocol for creating new CRC workgroups. CRC agreed that formation of new workgroups is to be determined by the CRC Chair with the consensus of the full CRC.
New Workgroup assignments:
Protocol Workgroup: Mr. Miggins, Mr. Ramjan, Mr. Troy
Appeal Workgroup: Mr. Miggins, Ms. Silver, Mr. Eriksson, Mr. Troy
Audit/Case Handling Workgroup: Ms. Robison, Mr. Bissonnette, Mr. Ramjan
Taser/Less Lethal Workgroup: Mr. Bigham, Ms. Silver, Ms. Detweiler
Mr. Eriksson stated that he and Mr. Bigham met with Commissioner Leonard and discussed possible changes in civilian oversight.
Appeal #2009-X-0005 (IPR #2006-C-0475): Mr. Ramjan and Mr. Bigham volunteered to present the hearing summary. In the interest of time, Director Baptista suggested scheduling a special session for this hearing. Mr. Troy made a motion to schedule a special session. Mr. Bissonnette seconded. Mr. Miggins requested a friendly amendment to specify the tentative date of the special session. Mr. Troy amended the motion to specify a tentative date of 2/17/09. Mr. Bissonnette seconded the amended motion. The motion passed unanimously.
Correspondence: Mr. Bigham received a letter from Assistant Chief Martinek in response to CRC’s letter to him expressing their concerns about the findings in case #2008-C-0100. It was decided by consensus that designated CRC members will meet with Assistant Chief Martinek to follow up on his letter. Chair Bigham and Ms. Silver offered to meet with him.
Ms. Silver asked if it would be possible for a CRC member to be present during an officer debriefing. Captain Brumfield said he would find out.
The National Lawyers Guild has presented a proposal to the City Auditor, Commissioner Saltzman, the IPR Director, and the CRC Chair to institute a system in which volunteer attorneys and law students serve as advocates for appellants. Chair Bigham referred this proposal to the Appeal Workgroup.
VII. Workgroup Updates
Bias-based Policing Workgroup (Mr. Miggins): Did not meet. They are still working on the draft report.
Case Handling Workgroup: (Ms. Robison) Did not meet. Meeting with new members not yet scheduled.
IPR Structure Review Workgroup (Mr. Bigham): Last meeting was on 1/5/10. The workgroup is continuing to draft its report. Next meeting: 1/25/10, 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m., 1st Floor Auditor’s Conference Room.
Outreach Workgroup (Mr. Miggins): Last meeting was on 12/29/09. The workgroup worked on developing an action plan based on the approved work plan. The workgroup also discussed the James Chasse public forum. It was proposed to hold the forum at Portland State University with the Chair of the Criminology and Criminal Justice Department serving as mediator. Mr. Miggins, Ms. Silver, and Mr. Bissonnette are scheduled to meet with the Department Chair on 1/15/10. The workgroup also discussed the possibility of developing and distributing a Public Service Announcement (PSA). Next meeting: 1/15/10, 3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. in the 1st Floor Auditor’s Conference Room.
PARC Report Review Workgroup (Mr. Bigham): Did not meet last month. Final report is still being worked on. Next meeting: 1/20/10, 3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. in the 1st Floor Auditor’s Conference Room to nail down language for the final report.
Protocol Workgroup (Ms. Robison): Workgroup did not meet last month. Next meeting is not yet scheduled.
Appeal Workgroup: First meeting: 1/14/10, 3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. in the Audit Services Library.
VIII. Old Business
Tracking List: (Ms. Robison): one item has been added to the Tracking List (letter to Assistant Chief Martinek); there was consensus of the full CRC that items will be removed from the Tracking List at the time when a workgroup is formed to address the issue. The items will then be moved to the Closed Tracking List. It was decided to periodically schedule time at CRC meetings to work on the Tracking List.
Auditor Griffin-Valade informed CRC that the Audit Services Division has initiated an audit of the Police Bureau’s use of Tasers. She suggested that the Taser Workgroup consult with the Audit Services staff when they begin their discussions of Taser policies.
Mr. Eriksson asked again if there has been an updated Tips and Techniques on Service Improvement Opportunities since the last one on Service Complaints was in 2003.
IX. New Business
Chair Bigham stated that a background investigation is underway for new CRC member Ms. Lindsey Detweiler, who was selected to replace Ms. Myra Simon. The background investigation is expected to take approximately 4-6 weeks.
Mr. Eriksson announced that there will be a refresher training on 1/26/10 for members of the Use of Force Review Board.
Ms. Silver discussed a draft PSA that was compiled by the Outreach Workgroup. Mr. Eriksson made a motion to accept the Outreach Workgroup PSA and authorize its distribution. Ms. Robison seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.
Mr. Eriksson encouraged CRC members to continue to establish liaisons with the Mayor and City Commissioners to provide them with information about IPR and CRC. The CRC members agreed to liaison with the following commissioners:
Mayor Adams: Jamie Troy
Commissioner Fish: Lewellyn Robison and Jeff Bissonnette
Commissioner Fritz: Rochelle Silver and Lindsey Detweiler
Commissioner Saltzman: Hank Miggins and Ayoob Ramjan
Commissioner Leonard: Loren Eriksson and Michael Bigham
Mr. Bissonnette asked about the status of the contract with an outside expert to review the Chasse investigation. Auditor Griffin-Valade said that negotiations have been completed and a lower price was agreed to, but the contract is not yet signed. It is expected that the Purchasing Division will have the contract ready to sign soon. The final expert review report will be due for release to the public on June 30.
Director Baptista gave a synopsis of recent discussions that she and Auditor Griffin-Valade have had with Commissioner Leonard regarding proposed changes to civilian oversight. Ms. Baptista stated that Mr. Leonard is willing to meet with CRC to discuss possible changes.
Chair Bigham initiated a discussion regarding the role of IPR and CRC in Bureau Initiated Investigations. Mr. Troy asked IPR Director Baptista several questions regarding IPR's notice and participation in a recent Performance Review Board hearing involving a Bureau Initiated Investigation. Ms. Baptista explained the issues and concerns regarding the handling of this case and generally discussed IPR's role in Bureau Initiated Cases.
X. Public Comment
Debbie Aiona (League of Women Voters) encouraged CRC members to meet with the commissioners on a regular basis.
Regina Hannon (Portland CopWatch) noted that the Appeal Process Advisor is not allowed to speak up during appeal hearings. Ms. Hannon supports the National Lawyers Guild proposal to provide legal advocates for appellants.
Dan Handelman (Portland CopWatch) felt that the procedures in tonight’s hearing were rushed; supported IPR’s efforts to contact a possible witness for tonights appeal case; encouraged IPR and CRC to use the appeal numbers rather than the IPR case numbers; preferred that the meeting with Assistant Chief Martinek be held in a public setting for the sake of transparency; encouraged CRC to network with the Community and Police Relations Committee.
Kelly Krohn: Questioned why investigative files are not available for appellants to review.
XI. Wrap-up Comments:
Director Baptista offered to meet with new members for a debriefing after the meeting.
Chair Bigham asked new CRC members if they would like to have mentors to assist in orienting them. The new members were paired with the following mentors:
Ayoob Ramjan with Lewellyn Robison
Jamie Troy with Loren Eriksson
Lindsey Detweiler with Hank Miggins
Jeff Bissonnette with Michael Bigham
Auditor Griffin-Valade thanked CRC, community members, media, Police Bureau members, and IPR staff for their service.
XII. Chair Bigham adjourned the meeting at 8:30 p.m.