Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Police Union calls on Chief to resign, citing 'morale', 'no confidence'

The Cleveland Police Patrolmen’s Association [CPPA] just concluded a news conference a few minutes ago. The news event was called in the wake of the release yesterday’s release by Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine of his investigative report into the homicides of Timothy Russell and Malinda Williams. Their deaths followed a dramatic chase through the streets of Cleveland and resulted from a one-sided shootout in the parking lot of a school in the city of East Cleveland.

The CPPA’s position appears to be one of adamant defiance to any conclusion other than one holding that all of its officers acted with impeccable and unchallengeable judgment, unquestioned legal authority, and extraordinary heroism during the chase and the one-sided firing of 137 bullets at two suspects who at this stage of the proceeding must be presumed to have been unarmed.

Corresponding to this position, the CPPA today called for the resignation of Police Chief Michael McGrath, saying that they have “no confidence” in his ability to lead and that “morale is at an all-time low”.

Further, the union said that no police officers should be terminated or demoted with respect to their participation in the chase and its aftermath.

The news conference was called at 3PM and I didn’t pick up the live feed until the final few minutes. There appeared to be about eight men standing shoulder to shoulder in a rough line across the stage, including Jeffrey Follmer, CPPA president. One sounded as if he might have been a CPPA lawyer.

Only when one of the policemen standing in front shifted his position did I observe a short uniformed black man behind the line of officers. He didn't look as if he wanted to be there.

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