Activists Say Police Foundation Review Falls Short

Feb 20, 2018

Community activists say this week's final report of The Police Foundation is a good start but falls short in its assessment of CMPD's response to protests after the police killing of Keith Scott in 2016.  Leaders of several groups spoke to reporters outside the Government Center uptown Tuesday. 

"I must say that the Police Foundation did quite a good report around the incidents as they stood between the first seven days,"  the Charlotte NAACP's Corine Mack said. "But at the end of the day, we're looking for real change. We're looking for the city to come together as one, understanding that in the black and brown community, specifically, there is some serious harms being done."

Mack wants a fuller review of all CMPD policies, and whether officers are actually following them when it comes to interacting with people of color.

Robert Dawkins of SAFE Coalition NC says CMPD has already implemented some recommendations in the report on transparency but wants more accountability for police officers' actions.

In particular, he's urging the city to keep lobbying state lawmakers to grant subpoena power to the Citizens Review Board, which handles complaints against officers. He also wants CMPD to act on the review board's recommendations after it cleared Officer Brentley Vinson of wrongdoing in the shooting of Scott. Those included improving the use of de-escalation tactics and reviewing its policy on allowing deadly force.

"It's been almost six months and they still haven't haven't responded to the request that the Citizens Review Board asked them for," Dawkins said. 

Mayor Vi Lyles has not responded publicly since the report was released last week.  She was out of town Tuesday and unavailable for comment. City council members say they're studying the report and will discuss it at a future meeting.