PCOC Meeting Snapshot: December Edition

00001The Police Conduct Oversight Commission held its monthly meeting on December 13, 2016. Highlights included the Commission passing a motion to begin a research and study regarding domestic violence cases; an announcement that funding for the mental health co-responder program has been approved; and the Commission passage of metrics devised by the Policy and Procedure Committee for the Chief’s Performance Review.

The meeting opened up with public comment and the approval of the last meeting minutes. Following this, Vice Chair Singleton motioned to direct the Audit Committee to devise a methodology for a research and study of domestic violence cases. Citing at length a case summary from October, which was moved to the Policy and Procedure Committee for greater inspection, Vice Chair Singleton commented that the case had opened up questions regarding the Minneapolis Police Department’s handling of such domestic violence cases. After some discussion, the motion passed.

Next, Vice Chair Singleton provided an update on the Co-responder Pilot Program to the Commission. Namely, Vice Chair Singleton informed the Commission that funding for the program had been approved by Minneapolis City Council. Vice-chair Singleton noted that three officers and two mental health professionals were a part of the approved funding. Further, Vice-chair Singleton stated that she continues to meet regularly with stakeholders—such as representatives of the MPD and Hennepin County—regarding the framework for the program, and that the group will soon create a white paper establishing that framework.

After this, Commissioner Foroozan motioned for the Commission to adopt the Chief’s Performance Review –- a series of self-described “neutral metrics”, gauging the police chief’s performance that will be conducted every 18 months. The seven metrics are as follows: 1) implementation of PCOC research and study recommendations; 2) interaction with Police Conduct Review Panel recommendations; 3) outreach and engagement to local and diverse communities; 4) law enforcement strategies taken to address crime; 5) training allocations based on issues identified by the Commission and MPD; 6) distribution of complaints amongst officers; and 7) conversion of arrests to convictions. After some discussion, the motion passed.

Also, Commissioners Cerillo and Westphal gave their opinions regarding the Peace Forum they attended, which took place on November 29th, 2016. Both commissioners commented that the Forum did not meet their expectations. In relation to the Forum, Commissioner Westphal stated that she gave it “3 out of 5 stars,” and Commissioner Cerillo commented that it was, “not successful…something got lost in translation.”

Lastly, Commissioners discussed cases 3, 8 and 10. Case 8 and 10 were moved to the Policy and Procedure Committee for tracking regarding language/attitude and de-escalation respectively. The Commission decided that cases 1, 6 and 8 from the December Case Synopses should be converted to case summaries for the next meeting.  The Commission then adjourned, with the next meeting scheduled for January 9, 2017.

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