OCTOBER 9, 1997
Citizen Advisors Present: Charles Ford, Presiding; Marina Anttila; David
Burney, Les Frank, Stephen Heck, Emily Simon; Jim Taylor, Robert Ueland, Randy
Weisberg, Robert Wells
Citizen Advisors Absent: Deborah Haring; Shanisse Howard
City Staff Present: Elise Anfield, Mayor's Office; Sgt. George Babnick, IAD;
Capt. Bill Bennington, IAD; Lisa Botsko, PIIAC Staff; Elisa Dozono, Mayor's
Office; Capt. Mike Garvey, Identification Division; Anna Kanwit, City Attorney's
Office; Mayor Vera Katz; Sgt. Randy Killinger, IAD; Diane Linn, Office of
Neighborhood Associations; Larry Siewert, Mayor's Office
Media Present: David Anderson, The Oregonian; Loren Christensen, Portland
Police Association; Dan Handelman, Flying Focus Video; Janelle Hartman, Eugene
Register Guard; Joe Kidd, Eugene Register Guard; Andy Rogers, Eugene Register
Guard; Chris Sullivan, KXL Radio; Terry Travis, KEX Radio
[Anttila and Simon had not yet arrived.] Ford called the meeting to order.
Advisors approved the September meeting minutes.
Diane Linn, Office of Neighborhood Associations, addressed the committee. She
said that the recent evaluation report for the Police-Citizen Mediation project
shows that the program is a success. Because of the City Council's Measure 47
budget process, the Neighborhood Mediation Center is in transition to a private,
non-profit organization. Mary Forst, former police officer and respected
mediator, is assisting with the transition.
Linn would like to have further discussion with the Police Bureau about
funding. She believes mediation is a cost-effective way to resolve disputes. She
believes that 1½ staff positions might be dedicated.
The NMC confirmed that they are essentially meeting the timeliness standards.
PIIAC Appeal #97-17: The appellant addressed the panel, saying he felt he
had been given the run-around with his complaint. He was stopped for a traffic
violation while riding his motorcycle. The officer said he had been speeding,
but he was not. The officer became hostile first, calling the appellant "boy."
Only then did the appellant get angry.
Botsko provided additional information about the complaint, including
information that the appellant had a lengthy DMV record and had his license
suspended several times.
Weisberg asked about the outcome of any court action; the appellant said he
had not yet gone to court. Weisberg also asked if any witnesses observed the
stop. The appellant said no. Wells asked the appellant if he had ever had
problems with an officer before. The appellant said he did not usually have an
attitude with officers, but this officer seemed to have a chip on his shoulder.
He acknowledged that he had received numerous traffic citations, and said he had
deserved those, but this time he was not speeding.
The appellant then said he was dissatisfied because he was expecting the
officer to be at the hearing. Ueland asked if he was perhaps referring to the
mediation process, which is different. The appellant said that's what he had
Wells made a motion to have PPB attempt to have the complaint mediated;
Botsko asked how the advisors wanted to handle the complaint if mediation was
rejected by the officer. Advisors agreed that it the complaint would then return
The motion passed unanimously [Y-9].
Advisors agreed that the case could come back to them if mediation did not
New Business: Ford said that some advisors wanted to discuss the issue of
Chief Moose's decision not to accept PIIAC recommendations on an appealed
complaint. This was the second time over the course of the summer that the Chief
had done so.
Ueland called for point of order. He believed this was outside the realm of
the advisory process, and therefore inappropriate for discussion.
Weisberg said it was advisors' responsibility to monitor the entire complaint
process. Ueland responded that advisors should then focus on the system, and not
particular cases. Weisberg agreed that advisors could discuss this issue solely
in the context of PIIAC structure. Simon thought this was the most serious issue
facing advisors and suggested advisors form a subcommittee to address this. Ford
and Weisberg agreed with this approach.
Weisberg had distributed a Willamette Week article which called the Chief the
"Rogue of the Week" for rejecting PIIAC recommendations. Ueland pointed out that
the Oregonian had also published an editorial with a different point of view,
but Weisberg had not provided that to advisors. Ueland also said that it was
only fair to point out that of three cases sent by PIIAC to the Chief with
recommended sustained findings, the Chief agreed once and disagreed twice. That
does not constitute any sort of trend. He expressed doubts that it would be
possible to remove that final authority from any city bureau manager.
Weisberg and Simon were both of the opinion that PIIAC's work is meaningless
if it can be ignored in the final analysis. If a majority of City Council
members agree with the advisors' audit and recommendations, that should mean
Botsko mentioned that a tentative date has been set for a Council Informal
regarding overall PIIAC systems review.
Weisberg made a motion to request the city attorney's office provide an
opinion of whether city code and contract language would permit PIIAC
recommendations to be binding upon the Chief. Ueland seconded. Simon offered a
friendly amendment to the motion, that a subcommittee be established to track
this issue. Advisors were agreeable to the amendment. The motion carried
Simon, Weisberg and Taylor volunteered to serve on the subcommittee.
Advisors went into Executive Session.
When advisors resumed Open Session, David Anderson of the Oregonian asked to
comment for the record. He said that a portion of the material advisors
discussed in Executive Session involved general policy issues, and was therefore
improperly discussed within Executive Session. Weisberg told Anderson to follow
the advice of his own legal counsel.
PIIAC #97-18: The committee discussed this case during a portion of the
Executive Session, as the appeal involved an Equal Employment Opportunity
complaint that had been sustained against several PPB officers.
Upon returning to Open Session, Heck and Botsko summarized the case and the
advisors' previous discussion. Heck said that at some point in the future,
advisors should examine what their charge should be with respect to this type of
The appellant is a Portland police sergeant who was one of the subjects of
the investigation. Although the complainant had made several allegations against
him, only one -- courtesy -- had been sustained.
His appeal was based on several factors: lack of timeliness of both complaint
and investigation, lack of thorough investigation, disparate treatment with
higher-level supervisors named in the complaint, and insufficient evidence to
support the sustained finding.
Botsko and Heck had reviewed the investigation. Botsko noted that the
investigators had made a good-faith effort to determine whether supervisors
appropriately acted on information of possible wrongdoing. Some of the testimony
was so inconsistent and contradictory, that it was impossible to determine who
knew what when. The findings in these cases were "Insufficient Evidence," which
were appropriate. Other supervisors had documented their attempts at resolving
the problems, and that information was incorporated into the investigative file.
Timeliness has historically been a problem with PPB investigations. This case
was no exception. Although the sustained allegation was for something that
supposedly happened in 1991, it was included in the complainant's charges of a
pattern of problems. The Bureau has no time restrictions in place.
The information relied upon to sustain the allegation was weak and
mischaracterized in the written general summary. The complainant provided two
different versions of the event in question and was not questioned on this
point. Information was developed in the investigation that seriously undermined
the complainant's credibility. She provided the name of one potential witness,
Officer B, who contradicted himself in his interview. He was not sufficiently
questioned about his equivocation. Chief Moose, in his letter to Sergeant A,
quoted the general summary's account of Officer B's testimony. Also, others
interviewed in the course of the investigation who may have been in a position
to comment were not questioned about this allegation. However, no information
was developed that would specifically refute the allegation, so a more
appropriate finding would appear to be "Insufficient Evidence."
Botsko said that the case was so complex, and so much work already done, that
she was hesitant to recommend further interviews. She suggested that Review
Level Committee reconvene, and be provided with full information about both
Officer B's and Sgt. A's testimony.
Ueland made a motion to have the PPB Review Level Committee reconvene and
reconsider the finding. Botsko asked if the motion could include a stipulation
that the Review Level Committee fully examine Sgt. A's and Officer B's
testimony. Ueland agreed to include that as an addition to his motion. Frank
seconded. The motion passed [Y-8; N-Anttila, Simon].
Additional Business: Ford summarized other discussion advisors held during
Executive Session. The previous month, they had agreed to set a deadline for the
City Attorney to release certain investigative materials to the monitoring
subcommittee. Since then, Ford, Simon, and Botsko had met with the City Attorney
Jeff Rogers and Mayor's Chief of Staff Sam Adams. Advisors could have further
discussions with Rogers, or have him appear this meeting. Rogers was concerned
about releasing investigative materials because of potential litigation, and
Ford was not inclined to press the issue.
Ueland made a motion to proceed to City Council on the matter; Wells
Simon said she would vote against the motion. She wanted to table the issue
pending further discussion. Rogers has not denied the materials to advisors, but
believes the material is not appropriate to disclose to advisors. Rogers had
provided information that changed Simon's mind about the need to obtain the
materials now. She said there was room for "give and take" and the monitoring
subcommittee can continue to be effective.
She said this case is a "white elephant" and the advisors have never gone to
Council before on this type of issue. She fully trusts and hopes that the
material will ultimately be released to the subcommittee.
Weisberg said he too would vote no, this is the first time such a dispute has
arisen. If a pattern develops, advisors should become more alarmed. He
recognized the importance of this issue with the monitoring subcommittee.
Well said he wanted to avoid having this case set a precedent. Ueland added
that the Police Bureau, from the top down, has always cooperated fully with
advisors. He firmly believed the case should be released to advisors, let the
chips fall where they may.
Ford said he would vote no as he respects the City Attorney's legal advice.
The time factor does not alarm him. Frank asked what the dire need was for the
The motion failed. [Y-Ueland, Wells; N-Anttila, Burney, Ford, Frank, Simon,
Ford reiterated that advisors can meet with Rogers. Simon said she was not
interested in attending. Ueland said there was no reason to meet with him.
Monitoring Subcommitee: Ueland reported. Advisors were provided draft
copies of the Third Quarter 1997 Monitoring Report. He said that although the
Chief's response to the Second Quarter report was appended, the response was not
received in time for the advisors to respond.
Ueland summarized the report. PIIAC is now a national model of a citizen
oversight function. He also pointed out the IAD was receiving an uncommon number
of courtesy and communciation complaints. The recommendation was to have the
Bureau adapt some of the communication training from the Crisis Intervention
training program to regular officer training. Advisors also recommended that a
fifth investigator position be restored to IAD.
Simon moved to accept the report, although she objected to some of the
language about "requesting" certain actions from the Bureau. She thought the CIT
training recommendation was a great idea. Ford asked if the advisors could
proceed regardless of the language and Simon was agreeable.
Ueland made a motion to accept the monitoring report; Simon seconded. The
motion passed unanimously [Y-9].
1. PIIAC Appeal #97-13:
Ford asked Capt. Bennington to read a letter he recently sent to Ford,
regarding PIIAC Appeal #97-13. [Advisors had requested additional investigation
on the matter at their September meeting. Because one of the allegations had
already been sustained, IAD had planned to research whether additional
investigation might constitute double jeopardy.]
Bennington said that IAD could re-interview the officers and ask them about
anything they wished. However, no further action could be taken on the old
allegations; because one allegation was sustained, the entire complaint was
essentially sustained. The appellant had brought up a new allegation, that the
police report contained falsehoods, and IAD could review that charge.
2. New Request for Appeal
Botsko distributed a new appeal request, which advisors read. Simon made a
motion to not consider the new appeal; Ueland seconded. The motion carried
3. Public Input
Capt. Garvey asked the committee if they thought taking advice from the same
city attorney representing his case in litigation constitutes a conflict of
interest. Kanwit responded that that was a matter for the advisors to decide,
but personally disagreed.
Dan Handelman, Portland Copwatch, commented on PIIAC Appeal #97-17. He had
been uncomfortable with the complainant's version of events, until the
complainant admitted past wrongdoing. He asked about PIIAC Appeal #97-18: how
could a sustained finding be reversed if discipline had already been imposed?
Botsko replied that formal discipline had not been applied in this case, and
that the any other finding would be reflected on the complainant's record.
Handelman pointed out that both "no" votes on that case were from the two women
sitting on the panel. Simon said that her vote had nothing to do with her
He said he was pleased advisors formed a subcommittee to examine the issue of
making findings binding upon the Chief. He agreed with David Anderson, that
advisors had used Executive Session improperly. Kanwit clarified that at no
point did she offer legal advice to any media members regarding the Executive
He has mixed feelings about the investigative file withheld from advisors. He
pointed out that the two people who voted to pursue the issue both serve on the
monitoring subcommittee, and are therefore the most affected. He asked how
advisors planned to re-visit this issue.
He approves of the recommendation regarding CIT training.
Nena Williams asked who was allowed to stay during Executive Sessions.
Advisors clarified that it was any member of the media, and city employees.
Botsko announced that she and Anttila would be attending a civilian oversight
conference the following week: National Association for Civilian Oversight of
Law Enforcement (NACOLE).
The meeting adjourned.
Lisa Botsko, PIIAC Examiner