Arrow-right Camera
Go to e-Edition Sign up for newsletters Customer service
Subscribe now
Opinion >  Letters

City lawyer bears watching

The Spokesman-Review

I see that Assistant City Attorney Rocky Treppiedi is again accused of unethical behavior (“Feds unhappy with city attorney,” Sept. 13), this time in the important civil rights case of Otto Zehm.

As a former member of the newspaper’s investigative reporting team, I would remind readers that this is the same attorney whose questionable handling of the 1986 Spokane Gypsy police raid resulted in the largest civil rights settlement ($1.4 million) in city history.

Treppiedi also has routinely countersued plaintiffs in civil rights complaints against the city – a practice uncommon in other Washington jurisdictions, including Spokane County, that ended after the results of our investigation were published in 2007.

As police lawyer when the drug unit was spending $5.3 million from a secret fund, Treppiedi apparently failed to advise the department that the practice violated city and state laws. (This ended last year after Police Chief Anne Kirkpatrick reported the illegal fund).

A city attorney is supposed to represent the public interest, not a few rogue elements of the police department. In the light of these past controversies, I would ask Spokane’s elected officials to look closely at the Justice Department’s concerns in the Zehm case.

Karen Dorn Steele



Letters policy

The Spokesman-Review invites original letters on topics of public interest. Your letter must adhere to the following rules:

  • No more than 250 words
  • We reserve the right to reject letters that are not factually correct, racist or are written with malice.
  • We cannot accept more than one letter a month from the same writer.
  • With each letter, include your daytime phone number and street address.
  • The Spokesman-Review retains the nonexclusive right to archive and re-publish any material submitted for publication.
Unfortunately, we don’t have space to publish all letters received, nor are we able to acknowledge their receipt.
Click here to learn more.

Submit letters using any of the following:

Our online form

Mail: Letters to the Editor
The Spokesman-Review
999 W. Riverside Ave.
Spokane, WA 99201

Fax: (509) 459-3815
Questions?: (509) 459-5430