Three Possible Citizen Review Board Models Addressed by TPD Chief Revell

Three Possible Citizen Review Board Models Addressed by TPD Chief Revell

After nationwide protests in response to police brutality, the Tallahassee City Commission unanimously voted at its last meeting on June 3 to establish an independent Citizen Review Board for the Tallahassee Police Department.

Citizen review boards have been implemented across the state and country to promote accountability within police departments and curb excessive use of force by officers. The boards allow community members to oversee and provide input on policing.

TPD Chief Lawrence Revell laid out three citizen review board models that have been implemented in other municipalities.

The first is an investigative model. According to an article by Olugbenga Ajilore from the Center for American Progress, the investigative model enlists independent civilians, who may have specialized training, to conduct fact-finding investigations into police misconduct complaints.

The second is a review-focused model which would be staffed by volunteers and community members who review the quality of internal investigations and make recommendations to the department.

The third is an auditing model, which is a hybrid of the first two models and may be focused on overarching patterns of police misconduct more than individual incidents.

According to the article, the investigative model “is the best equipped to enforce police accountability, because this type has the expertise, authority, and independence necessary to conduct credible and thorough investigations.”

To be most effective, citizen review boards must be independent from the police department so that reviews are as unbiased as possible. Boards also must be provided with adequate resources and funding as well as enough power to discipline officers when necessary.

Many Florida cities already have citizen review boards. In Orlando, a nine-member volunteer board meets monthly to review internal investigations of police misconduct. Members serve two-year term lengths and a maximum of three terms.

Miami, on the other hand, has a Civilian Investigative Panel (CIP) with subpoena power. The panel is made up of two members per district, two members recommended by the mayor, and one member appointed by the police chief. Recently, protestors have called for further civilian oversight in Miami.

The model and logistics of Tallahassee’s Citizen Review Board have not been set and will be discussed at the next City Commission meeting.

13 Responses to "Three Possible Citizen Review Board Models Addressed by TPD Chief Revell"

  1. To put CRBs in perspective, I believe the phrase “Many Florida cities already have citizen review boards.” really means a minority of cities out of the entire state. From information I have seen, looks like 15 police departments do have one vs. 128+/- that do not, of the police departments responding to a survey. Florida Police Chiefs Association, a most credible source, can supply more information, I am confident.

    As for holding police officers to a higher standard like doctors or lawyers, you’d better plan to pay them more for risking their lives and the well-being of their families every day when they go to work…even doctors and lawyers don’t risk that.

  2. Chief Tom Coe left the department to go be an ACM and he took the Chief hat with him. Nobody at TPD has worn it since. Not McNeill, Jones, DeLeo, Outlaw, or Revell.
    McNeil had a review board and it was a train wreck that lasted only a few months. Not due to McNeil, but due to the individual agenda with each member arrived.
    Mandatory body cameras are already a thing, the majority of the calls (traffic crashes and delayed events) do not need two officers in the same car and would essentially cut available staffing in half. More than have the investigations of TPD officers are initiated internally. Meaning they police themselves pretty vigorously.
    The hard reality is that the population is in need of more “training” (church, family, school, and general civility) much more so than the police. If you eliminated all the tragic events where a simple verbal request or order was made by police and ignored, before a shot was fired or a punch was thrown, or a neck kneeled upon, then what would we be talking about?

    1. So reading between the lines I’ve come to the conclusion that DeLeo left because he finally got tired of Reese Goad’s petty micro management. And the others prior to DeLeo same reason but their breaking point was with criminal City Manager Fernandez.
      Quite likely one and all were given a little extra consolation prize parting gift for signing non-disclosure agreements.
      Outlaw probley the exception because he knew it was a temp gig.
      Let’s see how much nit picking micro management torture Revell can stomach before he throws in the towel.
      Or perhaps even sooner Revell will be demoted or forced out for failure to have been born as a Black man.
      Very interesting.
      Thanks Tango.

  3. The main issue for the man in charge is how can he keep the angry folks in town thinking Lawrence Revel is in charge and able to make any decisions?
    Thats what Reese Goad must obsess over every day. Quite likely Reese wakes up at night in a cold sweat after nightmares that the angry mob is out in his yard because they found out he and not Lawrence Revel is the man behind each and every decision.
    Why do you think that highly qualified (Black) applicant pulled out of the process? OK I’ll ‘splane it to any newbys or those not paying attention. The highly qualified (Black) candidate did not want to be Reese Goad’s “yes man” while just pretending to be in charge.

    1. Because he thought his old grew up in the neighborhood buddy Bill Proctor was going to pull his strings and not goad. Funny how that worked out
      No one knew he was from tallahassee until he quit. .

  4. Tim is exactly right. Training is the crucial element here. Training always gets the smallest share of the budget and is the first to be cut. Effective screening in a good hiring process along with solid training that is applicable and supported by front line supervisors would go a long way to help eliminate these problems and issues.

  5. 01> Put Body Cameras on EVERY OFFICER. Body Cam Rules: A> Never Turn it Off. B> If it is malfunctioning, you MUST get it replaced before you go on another Call. C> if you turn it off or Cover it you will automatically be suspended for 3 Days with out Pay.

    02> Put TWO Officers back in each Car, they are to Police each other. If one starts to do wrong, the other must step in to correct it. If not, they BOTH are punished. If there is more than one Car on a Call, they ALL Police each other or all Face punishment.

    03> Because of their Job, Law Enforcement Officers must be held to a Higher Standards, just like Doctors, Nurses, Teachers and Lawyers. They are also held to the same Laws as everyone else and receive the same punishments as everyone else. No more Shield of Protection.

    1. How, and by whom, will the board members be selected and appointed?
      Will they serve at the pleasure of the appointing authority, or for a term?
      Who will decide which cases are referred to the board?
      Who will make the case presentations to the board?
      Will the board have authority to have closed sessions?
      Will the board have authority to release its findings without editing by the TPD or City Hall?
      Will there be a requirement for TPD or City Hall to publicly respond with actions taken in response to the board’s findings and recommendations?
      Will the board have legal counsel other than the City Attorney or TPD legal staff?
      Will the board have subpoena power, and the authority to take sworn testimony?
      Create a review board, but give it the muscle to do its intended job.
      We don’t need another Do Nothing Independent Board.

  6. None of these have teeth.
    Orlando’s version is a laughing stock. Just Google it- the review board in Orlando can’t do anything and depend on findings from IA reviews… That are somehow never closed.

  7. Quite a kerfluffle this afternoon at TPD over naming the officer who shot the mentally unstable person on Holton Street. All the officers walked out if the meeting!

    1. The Center for American Progress is a big liberal think tank in DC. Funded by George Soros and The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Clinton and Obama supporters.
      I’d be reluctant to trust any opinions they put out.

  8. Bias one way or the other is bad on any review board. What may be worse is if the members of the review board are elected or appointed by other elected officials and are apt to have their judgment sway based on the social whims of the day. This becomes especially problematic if there is no personal cost for bad calls. Training of law enforcement is the most important aspect to maintaining law and order without violation of protocol!

  9. If a person is biased against the police to being with, how could they possibly hold a position on any review board? I mean, wouldn’t the police be automatically wrong before any investigation started?

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