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Groups Renew Call for New Independent Civilian Review Board

By Staff –


police accountability

Enough is Enough Rochester, and several supporting organizations, have renewed their call for the city to create a new independent police accountability board with the powers to investigate, adjudicate, and discipline Rochester police officers for misconduct, especially related to the excessive use of force.

“The power of an independent body to impose discipline on police officers is essential for true police accountability,” the groups said. “Despite misconceptions to the contrary, nothing in state law would prevent the proposed police accountability board from disciplining officers. …Analysis of the current police review process should address the most serious civilian allegations – those of excessive force. From 2002 – 2016, no officer has been terminated due to a civilian allegation of excessive force, according to Professional Standards Section Annual Reports. Thus, the current system is not working, and Rochester needs independent disciplinary power to achieve true accountability.”

The coalition is seeking the creation of a new review board, with the following essential powers:

  • Independent investigative authority as an agency of city government independent from the RPD;
  • Subpoena power to compel the production of evidence and witnesses;
  • The authority to conduct misconduct hearings;
  • Disciplinary authority; and
  • The power to evaluate systemic patterns, practices, policies, and procedures of the RPD to recommend changes and prevent misconduct.

According to Barbara Lacker-Ware, of Enough is Enough Rochester, the organizations plan to present their proposal at the next Rochester City Council meeting on Feb. 20, and the coalition will continue to present its proposal each month thereafter, until the ordinance to approve the new board is passed.

“We’ll be at city council speaking every month, until this ordinance is passed,” Lacker-Ware said.

The city council meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m., in Council Chambers, Room 302A, in City Hall, 30 Church St.

Click on the image below to view Lacker-Ware explain the purpose of the group’s proposal.

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