APRIL 9, 1998
Citizen Advisors Present: Charles Ford, Presiding; Marina Anttila; Gene
Bales; Les Frank; Deborah Haring; Steve Heck; Leora Mahoney; Robert Ueland;
Randall Weisberg; Robert Wells
Citizen Advisors Absent: Emily Simon
City Staff Present: Capt. Bill Bennington, IAD; Lisa Botsko, PIIAC Staff;
Adrianne Brockman, City Attorney's Office; Officer Paul Dolby, PPB Training
Division; Sgt. Donna Henderson; Sgt. Randy Killinger, IAD; Officer Scott
Montgomery, PPB Training Division
Media Present: Maxine Bernstein, The Oregonian; Dan Handelman, Flying Focus
[Anttila not yet present.]
Ford called the meeting to order. He said he would change the order of the
agenda items because Ueland had to leave early. The March meeting minutes were
accepted with one amendment.
PIIAC #98-03: Botsko summarized. IAD had declined this complaint. The
appellant claimed that an officer from PPB's Domestic Violence Unit had
improperly prepared a restraining order against him on behalf of his wife.
The officer had made up lies and pressured his wife into signing the
restraining order. The appellant also said the restraining order was vacated by
the judge. Botsko added that police reports in IAD's file reflected two
officers' observations of injuries to the wife, and related the wife's account
of the appellant's actions against her. The complaint was declined because DVRU
officers can assist a victim file a restraining order and information supported
The appellant addressed the committee. He said he is from the Fiji Islands,
is very religious, and his marriage to his wife had been arranged. He hired an
attorney to investigate her and learned a great deal about her character. He
believes his wife was manipulating "the system" to her advantage, and that the
system is biased against men. He mentioned some allegations that had not been
provided to advisors; Capt. Bennington clarified that these were the substance
of a different complaint. Botsko said no appeal had been filed for the second
Capt. Bennington added that the law and PPB policy mandates officers to make
an arrest with probable cause, which they had in this instance. The Domestic
Violence Unit is specialized, and officers do assist victims obtain shelter and
restraining orders. He believed the appellant objected to the procedure, and he
declined the complaint because the appellant did not allege anything that would
specifically violate PPB's rules.
Heck asked the appellant about the length of time the appellant waited before
filing a complaint. The appellant said his religious background causes him to be
philosophical, but after speaking with American ministers who urged him to fight
for his rights, he decided to file a complaint.
Weisberg asked the appellant if his wife showed up for the restraining order
hearing. The appellant said no, she had moved out-of-state. Weisberg said that
is why the judge vacated the order. He said he did not agree with IAD's
declining a case where allegations could state a violation, even as unlikely as
it may be in this case. He did not believe this case could be productively
investigated, with the wife unavailable, but IAD should have attempted to arrive
at a conclusion about the case, even if that would have been Insufficient
Evidence or Unfounded.
Ueland said that the appellant provided no compelling evidence that Officer
A's actions were in any way improper.
Ueland made a motion to affirm PPB's declination. Haring seconded. The motion
carried [Y-Bales, Ford, Frank, Ueland, Wells; Abstain-Haring, Heck, Mahoney,
Monitoring Subcommittee: Ueland reported on the First Quarter 1998 Monitoring
The monitoring report mentioned various issues. One is the Bureau's public
response when specific events lead to community concerns about police practices.
One thing IAD and PIIAC need to look at is ways to ensure the community knows
what accountability mechanisms are in place. To this end, the Public Information
Officer, Cliff Madison, will meet with the monitoring subcommittee. IAD is
continually assessing where complaint forms should be located. PPB has not
responded to the subcommittee's ongoing requests to have the complaint materials
translated into Spanish; therefore, the subcommittee will take the initiative in
getting these translated, then provide them to IAD for publication.
Secondly, the monitoring subcommittee reviewed two cases in which legal
support for officer actions was not adequately researched. In one case,
previously heard as an appeal by the committee, a protestor had his sign
confiscated. In another, a jaywalk pretext stop evolved into a seizure of pager,
cellular phone and bulletproof vest, purportedly as evidence of gang and drug
activity. The items were returned when PPB could not develop the case. The
committee is requesting that the Bureau obtain better legal clarification with
these two complaints.
Ford mentioned that during the Mayor's Initiative to improve PIIAC several
years ago, the idea of putting complaint forms out in the neighborhood coalition
offices met with some resistance. He thinks that idea should be revisited. Wells
asked why there was resistance? Ford said he did not know.
Ueland said that the monitoring report identified timeliness as an ongoing
problem for the Bureau -- most recent quarterly statistics show over 14 months
on IAD cases. Botsko clarified that IAD's statistics are hurt when the process
bogs down in other areas.
Ueland mentioned that the past quarter's case reviews showed several cases
getting bogged down with a particular person, and the subcommittee asks the
question about what standards of accountability are applied to those responsible
for adjudication. The monitoring subcommittee has previously emphasized IAD's
Capt. Bennington said that IAD's new quarterly audit will assist in
identifying overdue cases. Botsko said that the monitoring subcommittee
routinely looks at how long cases are spending in commander's offices, and there
really has not been a problem with any but this one recently. Bennington said
that particular commander has been spoken to.
Wells asked about IAD's request for new software. Capt. Bennington said that
the target date would be January 1, 1999. Weisberg asked why it is so difficult
to track cases manually. Capt. Bennington said that it's not, but what he is
looking for in upgraded software would be the data analysis capabilities, which
would be a help for the Early Warning System.
Ford asked about case backlog. Bennington said inquiries, done in the
precincts and divisions, are taking about 6 months, IAD investigations are
taking 12 months. IAD investigators have 20-plus cases.
Botsko asked how much time IAD is taking to call back complainants. Killinger
said it depended on who was available. They receive a surprising amount of bad
contact information. But with good information, callers get return phone calls
within 3 - 4 days.
Heck made a motion to accept the report; Frank seconded. The motion carried
Weisberg suggested that the declination issue be included in a monitoring
report. Botsko said the subcommittee could incorporate that into the next
Capt. Bennington introduced Sgt. Donna Henderson, who is replacing George
PPB Training Division Presentation: Officers Scott Montgomery and Paul Dolby
provided information about their training program. They said they focus on four
areas: defensive tactics, firearms, patrol, police vehicle operations -- all
designed around officer safety. They described the Bureau's levels of control,
handcuffing, San Kayjo hold, and how officers are instructed to get handcuffed
persons up off the ground.
They also commented on the issues of Sudden Death Syndrome. This is a
phenomena that has occurred throughout the nation, wherein someone in custody
suddenly stops breathing and quickly dies. While the causes are still
undetermined, certain common denominators have been identified, such as a person
being highly agitated, overweight, high on drugs or alcohol, placed in maximum
restraint -- and PPB is instructing officers about signs to look for and ways to
help prevent such deaths, such as how a prisoner is placed while being
Weisberg suggested doing monitoring reports only twice a year. Botsko said
that quarterly reports are required per code language, but that this could be
looked at in upcoming code changes.
Weisberg made a motion to request bi-annual monitoring reports in upcoming
code language changes; Antilla seconded. The motion carried unanimously
Ford mentioned that some citizen advisors and PIIAC staff will do a panel
presentation on PIIAC at the Neighborhood USA conference in May. He suggested
providing a sample monitoring report. Weisberg suggested an appeal report as
Capt. Bennington met with individuals involved in the mediation project. The
Mediation Center will be funded until July, and are currently handling
Handelman addressed the committee. He asked if a time frame had been
established with respect to the replacement ordinance? Botsko said it had
He also wondered if the neighborhood coalitions' reluctance to display
complaint forms might be because they could be perceived as being "against"
police for doing so.
He thought that the production of monitoring reports on a quarterly basis is
The meeting adjourned.