Posts tagged: Michael Beck
Spokane’s police ombudsman on Monday lost the power to independently investigate misconduct allegations against the city’s law enforcement officers.
The Spokane City Council voted 5-2 Monday to repeal police oversight rules it approved unanimously last year, blaming an arbitrator’s decision in July that determined the expanded powers violated the Spokane Police Guild’s labor contract.
Spokane City Council members suggested they may need voters to save the stronger police oversight rules they approved last year, by working to place the concept on the ballot.
Passions were high during the council’s Monday meeting as they discussed overturning police oversight rules. The debate included a few shouting matches between attendees and Council President Joe Shogan.
An arbitrator this week revoked a law that strengthened Spokane’s police ombudsman powers because the city did not consult the Spokane Police Guild before it was approved last year.
The decision by arbitrator Michael H. Beck effectively reverses rules that strengthened the ability of police Ombudsman Tim Burns to investigate alleged officer misconduct independently of police. The opinion was dated Monday; the city received it Tuesday.
The power to examine police wrongdoing separate from the police department’s own investigators is a change in working conditions that must be negotiated with the guild, Beck ruled.