MIAMI (CBSMiami/The Miami Herald) – The mayor of Miami-Dade County sent a memo to Police Director J.D. Patterson telling him the Miami-Dade Police Department should end the practice of investigating its own police-involved shootings and deaths of people in custody, reported CBS4 news partner The Miami Herald.
Gimenez said the cases should be turned over to the state for investigation.
The memo also stated the mayor has already had preliminary discussions with the FDLE about the matter.
“It is my strong opinion that a thorough and expeditious investigation by an independent agency which leads to a conclusion statement will strengthen the community’s trust of such a process, and faith that the investigation of any event that may be unjustified would reach an appropriate conclusion,” The Miami Herald reported Gimenez wrote in the documents.
Patterson told the paper, Friday, that he wasn’t yet on board with the plan, “but if we can come out of it with a better product, I’m for it.”
If the plan moves forward, Patterson said no officers would be moved and a transfer of services would not cost the department.
The Police Benevolent Association President John Rivera released a statement to CBS4:
“Our position/statement is that what needs to be transparent is the County’s procurement process. Specifically, which lobbying/consulting firms are associated with each project, who works for those lobbying firms and whom from the County are they related to. MDPD has an impeccable and untarnished reputation for conducting thorough and unbiased investigations. The Mayor’s attempt to dismantle the police department seems to have started when the MDPD Public Corruption Investigations Bureau’s investigation regarding absentee ballots led directly to the Mayor’s campaign office and an employee of Commissioner Bovo, who is seemingly the Mayor’s political ally. This memo is nothing more than political and an attempt to distract from the labor disputes that are going on. The timing is clearly suspect.”
Miami-Dade had 17 police-involved shootings in 2013, and two in-custody deaths. Of those, investigations have been completed in six and passed on to the state attorney.
Read The Miami Herald article here.
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