ANALYSIS: Second Police Review Board Report of 2020 (August):
Three Cleared Shootings, Mostly Minimal Discipline
Table of contents
Three Shootings, Two Deaths, No Misconduct Found
Rare Outcomes: All Civilian Complaints Upheld... Mostly
Community Members Barred from Weighing In
Cop on Cop Discourtesy Leads to Reprimand
Data We Keep Asking For
From: Portland Copwatch
To: Christopher Paille, Police Review Board Coordinator
Chief Chuck Lovell, Portland Police Bureau
cc: IPR Director Ross Caldwell
Auditor Mary Hull Caballero
Mayor/Police Commissioner Ted Wheeler
Citizen Review Committee
US Department of Justice and Compliance Officer/Community Liaison
Members of the media
August 19, 2020
Mr. Paille and Chief Lovell:
The Portland Police Bureau released the second Police Review Board (PRB) Report of the year in late July (posted
https://portlandoregon.gov/police/55365). The PRB looks at cases with Sustained (out of policy) findings in
order to recommend discipline, sometimes proposes changes to findings, and reviews all deadly force incidents.
The new Report reveals that the Board disagreed with the first-ever City Council finding of misconduct, but since
they were not allowed to change the finding, instead recommended the most minimal discipline. Of 28 officers who
received discipline in 11 of the 14 included cases, only six received time off without pay. The Board also, as usual,
found no misconduct in any of the three deadly force cases they reviewed; however, they did ask for an officer to
be debriefed in one non-fatal incident because he failed to wait for backup to arrive before taking the suspect into
custody. Especially in light of the uprisings calling for racial justice and police accountability, the Bureau needs to
make a better effort to discipline officers who violate people's rights, examine the behavior of the involved officers
and underlying policies, and at the very least create more transparent and thorough Reports.
Of the 11 non-shooting incidents, five came directly from community member complaints ("C" cases) and another
five were mis-identified as "Bureau only" ("B") cases even though they all involved civilians in one way or another.
This classification is also incorrectly assigned to deadly force cases, which of course involve civilians. For example,
an officer who looked down at their in-car computer, ran through a stop sign and got hit by a car which had the
right of way received one day off without pay, but their case was listed as "Bureau-only." There is no broader
impact in the sense that the civilian whose car hit the cop's would not want to appeal the Sustained finding in this
incident, but classifying cases this way takes away that right of appeal in others, including the shootings.
Regardless, Portland Copwatch (PCW) labels such cases as "B/C" to reflect how their impact on the community
goes beyond city employees. Only one case was appropriately labeled as a "B: case. Our case numbers follow the
order they appear in the PRB Report.
The three deadly force cases considered were (1) The January 2019 incident (B/C 7) where Officer Onest Robert
shot at Anita Ruiz but missed, which led to the debriefing about backup; (2) The April 2019 case (B/C 6) where
David Downs had taken a woman at knifepoint and was killed by Officer Nathan Kirby-Glatowski in a stairwell;
and (3) The July 2019 shooting death of Lane Martin (B/C8), who was killed by Officer Gary Doran when he
thought Martin was grabbing a knife.
The most remarkable thing about these three case summaries is that they all appeared to involve people in mental
health crisis-- Ruiz had a knife and said she was going to kill someone, Downs held a fake detonator, claiming he
had a bomb, Martin was diagnosed with mental illness and had been swinging an axe toward pedestrians. However,
even though the US Department of Justice has had the PPB in court since 2012 to ensure they use less force
against people in mental health crisis, the only hint of these likely crises is a description of Martin being "angry
and erratic." It is inconceivable that the Board apparently did not raise this issue.
Apart from the car crashing cop (B/C 5), the five other cases that ended in time off without pay were varied. (a)
Four officers failed to take shoes from a prisoner who used the laces to hang themselves (B/C 4). One cop saw the
shoelaces and was suspended for doing nothing to act on the procedural violation, even though signs outside
holding rooms outline what items can go in. Two of the other three officers received Letters of Reprimand; the
third retired before receiving that discipline. It is not clear whether the person was successful in taking their own
life. (b) An officer who failed to file a required report even after being ordered to do so got three weeks off without
pay (B/C 3). Chief Resch had been asked to fire the cop for lying about not knowing he was supposed to file the
report, but overturned the Board's recommendation. (c) An officer who did not take a child abuse report got one
week off without pay (C3), in part because they had a similar infraction within the past two years. (d) One of the
eleven officers who used personal cell phones to share part of a report about a traffic crash involving a cop received
one day off because they sent the information to nine people, including some outside the Bureau (B/C 2). Nine
other officers got Command Counseling and one a Letter of Reprimand. (e) An officer who refused to end a car
chase when ordered, leading to the suspect crashing into another car got one day off (B/C 1). Sharp readers will
note that all of these cases involved community members, but only the child abuse report incident is listed as a "C"
(civilian involved) case.
Other significant cases include one in which an officer failed to file a report about pushing a protestor with a baton
(C1), and another where an officer arrested two people without probable cause (C5), both of which ended with the
lowest discipline possible-- Command Counseling. It's rather alarming that such serious violations of rights end
with metaphoric slaps on the wrist.
The incident that went to Council, in which they found Officer Neil Parker retaliated against Kristin Bowling by
giving her a jaywalking ticket, ended with a Letter of Reprimand (C2). The Board, which includes one civilian and
an "Independent" Police Review (IPR) manager, unanimously disagreed that Parker had retaliated, and ignored the
Discipline Matrix requirement which calls for a minimum of two days off without pay by suggesting Command
In addition to the officer who failed to file a report, Chief Resch lowered the proposed discipline from
Letter of Reprimand to Command Counseling in the pushed protestor case (C1) and for one of the
officers in the texting case (B/C 2).
The PRB meetings are closed to the public-- including complainants and families of those shot by police.
The Board is made up of a majority of police (an Assistant Chief, the officer's commander, and one or
two cops of the same rank as the accused), the abovementioned IPR staff member, and one to two
community members. When a case involving the use of force makes it to the Board, the full contingent of
seven people can vote. In the two deadly force cases that list vote tallies (rather than saying "unanimous"),
only six members voted on any of the reviews of supervisory actions (the Downs and Martin cases). It is
not clear whether this is because the officers' supervisor is one of the people being assessed for
compliance, but if that is the case, the Board needs to bring on another person to vote in their place. PCW
and others in the community have repeatedly opposed the fact that Supervisors are already being given a
"second bite at the apple" by voting on whether to affirm their own recommended findings.
Other abnormal voting showed up in the case about the cop who refused orders to file a report (B/C 3),
where one member abstained on all the votes, leading to one allegation with a split recommendation. A
similar split vote happened in a case where an officer went around the procurement process to try to get a
personal weapon of some kind (C4). In that case, two members voted to Sustain the allegation of
improper conduct, two wanted to Exonerate the officer and one said there was insufficient evidence ("Not
Including supervisory reviews in deadly force incidents and cases involving multiple officers, the Board
reviewed 67 allegations (plus their consideration of the Council's final say). They made recommendations
to Sustain 39 of those (58%). The Chief over-ruled them on three, saying there was not enough evidence
to prove the cop who failed to write a report when ordered to do so had lied to two supervisors and
Internal Affairs (B/C 3), but sustained the split finding on ethical conduct (C4).
Though inconsistently reported, the reasons for the 14 cases being at the Review Board broke down this
way: Four were sent by the officers' commanders, four were controverted by an Assistant Chief, one by
IPR, one by IPR and an Assistant Chief together, one came from City Council, and the three deadly force
cases get automatic reviews.
The incidents included took place between 2018 and 2019, with hearings between January 2019 and April
2020. So while case resolution may be speeding up a little, the public reporting is still delayed.
Furthermore, PCW found the Report in a routine check of the PPB's site, rather than the Bureau
announcing it publicly as we have recommended repeatedly.
The most irritating part of the Reports also continues, where the Bureau blacks out names, genders and
this time even types of equipment and division titles. The PRB ordinance allows the Bureau to publish the
names of people involved in deadly force incidents, but they still do not do so. To be fair, they do include
the date and exact location for each of the three shootings, but still, in an era with the rallying cries of "say
their names," it reflects badly for the PPB to still talk about "the suspect" (Ruiz), "Person 1" (Martin) and
no mention at all of the other person who was killed (Downs).
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THREE SHOOTINGS, TWO DEATHS, NO MISCONDUCT FOUND
As has been the case since the PRB Reports began being published about nine years ago, the summaries of the
deadly force incidents are short on details, almost to the point where it's not clear how much of the "totality of the
circumstances" even entered into the deliberations. The perfunctory three-page summary of the shooting of David
Downs contains no discussion or recommendations, and never even refers to the man who was killed even in vague
terms. The narratives included in the four page summary of the Anita Ruiz case and ten pages on Lane Martin are
100% supportive of the officers' point of view, with most of the written words involving discussion of what the
policies say supervisors are supposed to do after the use of deadly force. Here are a few other details on the three
(B/C 6) Downs
Though there was a distinct possibility the officer could have injured or killed the woman Downs was holding at
knifepoint, the Board felt there were "no other options" than deadly force. They say Officer Kirby-Glatowski
"reasonably believed there was an immediate threat of serious injury or death to a member of the public," spouting
back language from the Directive and not wondering whether his threat to detonate a non-existent bomb was
reasonable to believe. The other involved officer, Jackson Oldham, use a less lethal weapon which the Board said
"was reasonable to prevent a crime and protect a member of the public against harm." The only other narrative
information repeats for each of four supervisors that they "accomplished all required tasks in a timely manner."
For a Bureau that touts its transparency, this is one of the worst deadly force summaries they have ever produced.
(B/C 7) Ruiz
For some reason, Officer Roberts is called "Employee 5" in the summary, which says he was "confronted by the
suspect coming at them, a fellow officer, and another community member with a long kitchen knife at a quick pace,
with the intent to inflict serious injury or death." There is no mention of Ruiz's cousin, a witness, who questioned
why the officer fired his gun (KOIN-TV, January 3, 2019). One Board member did question why Roberts didn't
just let the spring-loaded door close rather than shooting; Internal Affairs said the officer thought Ruiz would get
to the door quicker than it would shut. So the Board "unanimously found a clear threat was present and Employee
5 was within policy to protect self and others [sic]." As noted above, they asked that Roberts be debriefed about
waiting for backup before taking a suspect into custody.
The PRB also asked for a policy review about when officers can send medical support away, which supervisors did
after they determined Ruiz wasn't injured. Presumably the Board pondered the idea of letting a professional make a
determination about the community member's health rather than a police officer making that diagnosis.
(B/C 8) Martin
Martin had been in mental health crisis, and had earlier dropped the axe he was carrying when one officer (cleared
by the Board) hit him with a "less lethal" round. Doran later cornered him in the breezeway of an apartment
complex and ordered Martin to show his hands. The Board supported Doran's "belief" that Martin was pulling out
a knife, saying the officer was "confronted by Person 1 who was willing to use a weapon that could cause death or
serious physical injury against them, other members, or citizens unable to get out of harm's way." Another example
of how the documentation in this case summary points to exonerating the officers: "Members gave [Martin] space,
spoke to [him] calmly, gave [him] specific instructions, and gave [him] enough time to process that information."
They add that another officer ("Employee 8") spoke to Martin "hands free" but the "de-escalation techniques were
unsuccessful." De-escalation can also involved backing off and letting time work in your favor.
The Board made five recommendations, two of which had to do with not bothering the involved officer to make a
"public safety statement" if the information can be obtained by other means. The third was to stop referring to the
"21 foot rule," a discredited police theory about how far a person with a knife can safely stand before officers can
use deadly force on them. This was supposedly already done after OIR Group made this recommendation years
ago, but apparently came up from Internal Affairs investigators, indicating the investigation itself was likely biased.
The fourth recommendation had to do with offering training twice a year for "specific members" if officers have
strong interest in being "specific members." The Bureau, they said, is "relying heavily on members to fill member
vacancies." The fifth one says the Training Division should be sure "someone communicates" when they "assume
a specific role" when they "take control of an active tactical situation." It is completely unclear what they were
talking about in these last two recommendations.
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RARE OUTCOMES: ALL CIVILIAN COMPLAINTS UPHELD... MOSTLY
In what may be a first for these Reports, none of the five civilian complaints were completely treated as less
credible than those initiated by Bureau members. However, the Board's attitude toward the City Council vote (C2)
and split vote in the ethics case (C4) show that the Sustained findings weren't universally accepted.
The Review Board members are quoted as saying that Officer Parker did not _intend_ to retaliate against Ms.
Bowling by citing her with jaywalking. It is not clear whether they reviewed the entire record, in which Parker noted
that he saw Bowling taking pictures of his armored vehicle and making a disapproving face. The Board said he had
an eleven year "exemplary" record and many commendations, and one member talked about their personal
interactions with Parker-- which should have disqualified them as non-objective. Did any Board members
personally know Bowling?
The case had already been heard by the Citizen Review Committee (CRC), which upheld most of the Bureau's
findings and successfully challenged others, but Chief Outlaw refused to agree with them that Parker retaliated.
Her disagreement with the finding triggered the only-third-ever Council hearing on police misconduct since the
IPR system was created in 2001, and the first to end in a Sustained finding.
Though they disagreed with City Council's finding, two PRB members suggested a mitigated finding of minor
misconduct, which would lead to Command Counseling. One member felt there was no mitigation for that same
level of violation, saying Parker should have explained why he was giving the ticket and he deserved a Letter of
Reprimand. One bold member used the correct presumptive category for Retaliation, which is Category "E," and
said it was mitigated by Parker's history so he should only get two days off without pay, rather than one to two
weeks in the presumptive finding. The fifth member explicitly wanted to go outside the Discipline Matrix, saying it
is an advisory document, and thus they did not have to suggest any discipline at all. As noted above, Chief Resch
ultimately sided with the one member who asked for the Letter of Reprimand.
This case raises a lot of questions about the Bureau fighting back against civilians judging officer behavior. IPR
was created in the wake of three incidents in which City Council voted to Sustain allegations and two Chiefs
ignored their recommendations. Council's vote may be final, but the discipline still gets decided by the unelected
Chief and one Council member (the Police Commissioner/Mayor). This recalls the incident revealed in the
September 2019 Report in which Chief Outlaw said she agreed with CRC that an officer was untruthful, but
changed the allegation against the cop to a "performance issue." That led to an outcome of one day off without pay
rather than firing that officer. PCW hopes that a remedy will be offered so that if an empowered review system is
created through the fall ballot initiative, the people's voices will matter and the police do not get final say in policing
In this case an officer pushed one protestor among several who were found behind the "skirmish line" and he
worried they would be "outflanked." They pushed a person with their baton but did not document it as required in
policy. The force itself was "Exonerated" (in policy) and not allowed to be reviewed by the PRB, a policy PCW
strongly disagrees with. Since cases are judged by the "totality of the circumstances," the Board should be given
the ability to review the whole incident. Furthermore, no community members reviewed the force allegation, only
the Bureau and IPR bureaucrats. In any case, the officer apparently did not know their baton push was a
documentable use of force, even though they had signed off on a policy that explicitly says it is. Interestingly, this
incident happened at the August 4, 2018 protest at which several people were injured by police "less lethal"
Three members suggested a Letter of Reprimand, two suggested Command Counseling. As noted above, Chief
Resch lowered the proposed discipline, siding with the minority of the Board, who claimed the officer's failure to
document did not "taint the outcome" and that they acted lawfully.
The Board recommended training for all officers, not just the operations branch, in crowd control, and that crowd
Incident Commanders should have a script reminding officers what the policies say (note that this hearing was held
in May 2019). They also suggested that the Discipline Matrix be updated to reflect the way the current Use of
Force Directive reads.
It is a little unclear but it appears the abuse in this case was being reported by an adult about something that
happened to them as a child. The officer gave the person a business card and said to report it to the sex crimes unit.
The community member later said they had trouble connecting and wanted to report directly to the officer, who
claimed they did not remember that happening.
Four members recommended a week off without pay (which was ultimately imposed), while one only suggested
two days off. The previous similar case involving this cop may have been one of the two cases in the March 2020
Report in which officers failed to document domestic violence allegations, or one in the September 2019 Report
about potential child abuse.*-3
Weirdly, the Board suggested assigning this officer to the Child Abuse Team so they would appreciate how
serious of an issue this is; it seems that might end up resulting in worse service rather than an enlightened cop.
They also suggested clarifying the Directive on Child Abuse investigations to line up better with state law on
The narrative on this case is rather confusing, mostly because the Report redacts words which are replaced with the
generic terms "equipment," "equipment provider," "unit" and "division," with the recommendations section using
the word "resource" three times along with three other redactions. It appears that the officer in question approached
two civilians who are in some kind of weapons or other police-related supply business. The officer wanted to
procure a new weapon (?) for their own use even though the Bureau has their own. The vendors worried there was
some kind of scam going on and contacted the officer's supervisor. The summary indicates that the officer had
talked to their supervisor before placing the call. This is the case in which there was no majority vote-- two
members wanted to Sustain the allegation, two wanted to Exonerate the cop, and one felt there wasn't enough
evidence one way or the other. Chief Resch decided to Sustain the complaint and impose a Letter of Reprimand,
which was stronger than the two sustaining members' recommendation of Command Counseling.
The Board made a recommendation to, and we quote, "review the current --equipment-- policy to address issues
related to chain of command and --unit--, and that the --Division--- Division should have a designated --resource--,
whether they use other divisions' --resource-- based on capacity, or whether they have their own --resource--."
We're not going to bother playing "Police Review Board Report Mad Libs," but you can see how it would be
tempting to do so.
In this incident, the officer responded to a "--call type--" (redacted) which appears to have involved a vehicle. After
the witnesses were "deceptive" about the whereabouts of a suspect, the officer realized the suspect was the driver of
the vehicle, then arrested the witnesses along with the driver. The officer claimed the witnesses were "Interfering
with a Peace Officer," but legal cases have shown that mere speech is not sufficient cause to arrest someone on this
charge. The officer said they did not know the law, leading to two Sustained findings for procedural violations.
There is no mention whether there were legal ramifications, including civil claims and/or expungement of the
arrests, for the civilians involved.
This was considered a low level act of misconduct, which is alarming since it involved taking away two people's
freedom and giving them criminal records. Even though it was the officer's second violation, four Board members
thought the officer's 11 commendations should only lead to Command Counseling. The last member noted the
officer could be given one day off without pay, but only suggested a Letter of Reprimand. Resch agreed with the
The Board recommended creating a "portable" resource for officers to consult; it's not clear whether they mean a
legal resource guide they can look up on their phones or car computers or a printed manual.
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COMMUNITY MEMBERS BARRED FROM WEIGHING IN ON CASES THAT INVOLVED
This case involved three officers each facing the same three allegations around a car chase that ended with a crash.
The main officer decided to continue the chase of a stolen vehicle after their supervisor ordered them to stop. The
other two officers said they were worried for the lead officer's safety. One of them kept going but the other one
deactivated their lights and slowed down. The lead officer apparently knew they should not pursue the suspect after
they drove away from a "box-in" that failed. Showing how surprisingly quickly these situations unfold, the two
officers chased the suspect for just 12-13 seconds after the call to end the pursuit when the crash happened as the
suspect ran a red light. The third officer apparently had a camera in their patrol car that recorded most of what
Three Board members recommended one day off for the lead officer (which ultimately happened), while two
wanted a two day suspension. The other two officers were both given Letters of Reprimand even though one of
them ultimately did slow down.
The PRB recommended three things: (1) train supervisors on pursuit preparation and information sharing, (2) train
to refresh officers about managing pursuits, and (3) modify the pursuit policy so officers can box in suspects "pre-
emptively" if the vehicle is known to be stolen.
The case in which 11 officers were investigated and disciplined actually involved a 12th Bureau employee whose
actions weren't reviewed by the PRB. Perhaps they were a non-sworn employee. Officer "A" had written a report
about a traffic crash death, and returned to work after a weekend to find other officers were circulating via text a
part of that report as an image. The case summary is incredibly confusing as the officers (numbered from 1-12,
with #10 being the one not subject to review) are not listed in numerical order, and one of the people who initially
uploaded the image (Officer #1) is listed under allegation #5. It is not clear who the other ringleader was.
The officers seem to have mostly been judged based on how widely they disseminated the texts. Officer #4, who
sent the text to nine people including non-PPB personnel, was the only one suspended for the incident (one day
without pay). Officers #1 and #3 were each recommended to receive Letters of Reprimand. However, Chief Resch
lowered #1's punishment to Command Counseling without explanation; they initiated the text and sent it to their
spouse, who is also apparently a PPB officer, and one other member. Officer #3 sent the text to seven people
including one outside the Bureau.
The vote on ten of the officers was 4-1, with one Board member saying that it was "established cultural practice" to
use personal cell phones to send around information. That member suggested "Not Sustained" (insufficient
evidence) findings. For Officer #2 the dissenter recommended "Not Sustained with a Debriefing." Since the traffic
death was likely that of a community member, PCW believes, again, that this case should have been labeled a "C"
case to allow for an appeal by the person's survivors, had the Board agreed with the initial findings in which only
officer #4 was going to be found out of policy, but an Assistant Chief felt the recommended discipline needed to be
The Board made three recommendations. One was to train on the use of personal cell phones and sending out
Bureau information, one was to also train about the use of social media, and the last was to review the Directive on
photography to ensure officers don't use personal cell phones for police business. One person asked to look at
communication between married members of the PPB as a policy issue.
It seems the summary of the case where the officer refused orders to fill out a police report would have benefitted
from a description of the underlying investigation. Instead it basically says the officer contacted a suspect who had
been released by another officer on a separate call, then told another PPB employee a Sergeant said it would be ok
to delay writing a report. However, Supervisor "A" had told them to fill out the report, and Investigator "C" told the
officer to stop trying to do follow up on the case (trying to get a written statement from the victim and gather video
evidence) and write the report as required. The officer told one person they did not know the suspect's name but
within minutes gave that name to another Bureau member. It is not really clear what motivated this officer.
Of nine allegations that were reviewed, three were about untruthfulness: lying about getting permission to delay the
report, denying knowing the suspect's name and lying to Internal Affairs. The Chief changed all three findings to
"Not Sustained" saying there was no proof the officer was purposefully lying. The other six were about reporting
(failing to file by end of shift), crime scene protocols (failing to transmit the report), following orders (of two
separate supervisors), failing to follow up, and not working with the division doing the investigation. It should be
noted that the summary says, regarding the failure to write a "--type--" report, that the "position of --rank-- is
supervisory, but it is important to recognize that a --rank-- has a superior role to a --rank-- during investigation." In
this case it seems the last two blanks are that a Detective technically outranks a Sergeant, but that's just guess work
on our part.
Though the Board recommended to fire this officer on a 4-1 vote, Resch's overturning the most serious allegations
meant that she was technically justified in lowering the discipline to three weeks off without pay. The victim of the
original crime was potentially harmed by the officer's actions and the case should have been a "C" case, and
perhaps that person could have challenged the Chief's reversal.
The PRB recommended reviewing the policy which says the officer "should" file the report before end of shift
rather than "shall."
This is the case where not one but four officers failed to take away the shoes of an inmate who either tried to or
successfully killed themselves by hanging using their shoelaces. Officer #3 saw the inmate tie the shoelaces to the
wall and did nothing, leading to a violation of the holding rooms Directive; they then wrote an After Action report
even though they were technically an involved officer, leading to a Sustained violation of the Satisfactory
Performance Directive. There was a "Not Sustained" finding on failing to write an After Action report about Use of
Force, since there was no Force involved. The same findings were applied to Officer #4 because they let #3 write
the report and should not have. Officers #1 and 2 also got Satisfactory Performance findings against them (really,
unsatisfactory) for not removing the person's shoes per policy.
All findings were unanimous 5-0 votes, as were the recommendations for Letters of Reprimand for Officers # 1, 2
and 4, which Deputy Chief Davis imposed. However, as noted above, #4 retired before facing the discipline. Four
members asked for #3 to get one day off without pay (which, again, Chief Davis agreed to) while one only
suggested a Letter of Reprimand.
The Board made five recommendations, including training about Holding Rooms, After Action analysis (#3's
report did not explain why the shoes ended up in the cell), and having printed Directives officers can reference.
The officer who was looking at their computer had previously had two other preventable accidents within a year, so
the Board unanimously (the Report isn't clear how many people voted) suggested one day off without pay, which
Chief Resch imposed.
The Board also suggested the officer should ride with a senior officer to see how to drive properly, and one asked
they make a mandatory training for when officers violate policy related to "mechanical skills."
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COP-ON-COP DISCOURTESY LEADS TO REPRIMAND
The final case, actually first in the Report, dates back to 2018 and involves an officer who became angry
when a non-sworn employee did not pick up some items they were supposed to. Three members of the
Board found the officer's tone, tenor of speech and body language were discourteous according to both
the complainant and a witness. Two members thought that because there was no profanity or name-calling
and the officer didn't yell, there should be a "Not Sustained with a debriefing" finding.
The majority recommended a Letter of Reprimand because the officer did not seem to be aware of how
their actions affected other people.
The PRB made three recommendations: (1) revise the Courtesy Directive to include non-sworn members (at least,
we think that is what they mean); (2) have Internal Affairs look at how they ask questions about people's feelings,
and (3) give the involved officer communication training.
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...WE'LL KEEP ASKING TILL THE REPORTS ARE THOROUGH: ADD THESE DATA
PCW has repeatedly stated that the PRB's Reports could be improved by including the following data points, and
continue to ask these be added/standardized:
--the date of the incident in question
(the dates was given in just four of the 14 cases);
--the number of voting members and number of votes
(in four cases the votes were just listed as "unanimous"
though it was possible to ascertain the total in two of those);
--which opinions were from officers, civilians,
IPR staff, or Bureau management;
--the gender of all persons involved;
--the names of officers, particularly in cases which have already
been reported in the media and the PPB's website;
--more thorough background summaries for all cases,
especially in deadly force cases;
--an explanation of the delay in publishing a case;
--a general summary of the purpose of the PRB with a citation of the
City Code that created it;
--reports on the progress of PRB recommendations, and
--a list of the names of the civilian members of the Board, which
is public information and would enhance the Report. (This is not
a request to say which civilian sat on which Board, just a list.)
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Portland Copwatch appreciates that the Bureau has already put out two Police Review Board Reports by August
2020, where in the previous two years, the two mandated Reports came out in September and December. We hope
this means the Bureau is leaning toward quarterly reporting, which will be more timely, easier to prepare, and easier
to read and digest.
However, we continue to be concerned by the sometimes outrageous behavior highlighted by these cases, and
especially the callousness with which the Board reviews incidents where officers fired their guns at, and sometimes
killed, community members. It is not clear that the Bureau adopted new policies after the February 2019 OIR
Report requested that the PPB look at actions leading up to deadly force. The last Report included cases closer to
the release of OIR's suggestion, but the three shootings in this Report all were reviewed in 2020, so should have
been more thorough. In our last analysis we asked whether PRB members are given the OIR Reports to review.
We received no answer. As we have previously recommended, the City should hold public meetings of the fifteen
or so civilian pool members when the PRB Reports are released to go over process and policy questions that arise.
We also continue to believe that any incident involving a civilian-- including deadly force cases but also, for
instance, the five others we identified in this Report-- should be shared with the affected community member so
that they can file an appeal if they disagree with the Bureau's findings.
For the second time in a row and the fourth or fifth time overall, PCW seems to have reviewed this Report before
the mainstream media. Because these cases are of crucial importance to the community, the PPB should do their
own publicity and be sure everyone knows when the Reports are published.
Thank you for your time,
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*1- find the Discipline Matrix at
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*2- The Bureau uses four categories of findings in regular misconduct investigations:
--Sustained= officer violated policy
--Exonerated= officer actions within policy
--Not Sustained= insufficient evidence to prove/ disprove allegation
--Unfounded= facts do not support that action in allegation occurred
Any of the non-Sustained findings can include a debriefing where the officer is talked to about ways they could
have handled the situation better.
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*3-See PCW's analyses of:
The September 2019 Report:
and the March 2020 Report:
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and deaths page
Portland Copwatch home page
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Works home page
Posted April 6, 2019