UCPD review: Bring back tasers, limit traffic and pedestrian stops
CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - The University of Cincinnati released the findings Tuesday of a comprehensive report of the top-to-bottom review of their police department.
The report included 14 "fundamental findings" with 25 recommendations "needed to transform the UCPD." The review suggested that officers resume carrying Tasers, update policies, limit traffic and pedestrian stops and more.
"The report is comprehensive and sets forth a road map for continuous improvement of the UC Police Department," UC President Santa Ono said in a release.
UC, in partnership with the Safety and Reform Community Advisory Council selected Exiger – a national renowned police-monitoring firm – to conduct the review of the UC Police Department following the officer-involving shooting death of Samuel DuBose.
Dubose, 43, was shot and killed by ex-UC police officer Ray Tensing last July during a traffic stop for a missing front license plate.
Tensing was charged with murder and voluntary manslaughter. He has pleaded not guilty and faces an Oct. 24 jury trial.
Exiger's 12-member met with students, faculty, staff, administrators, UCPD officers, Cincinnati police officers and residents, according to UCPD spokeswoman Michele Ralston.
The investigators found that the department was doing an incredibly high amount of traffic stops because of the policing philosophy of former University of Cincinnati Police Chief Jason Goodrich, who has since resigned.
It also found that after City Council banned off campus stops, officers made 9 stops, claiming the incidents were threats to public safety.
Key recommendations needed to transform UCPD in Exiger's report include:
- Adopt a mission statement to serve as a foundation for on-going reform efforts.
- Establish internal audit service to audit the department and develop an annual audit plan.
- Develop a monitoring function to track reform efforts and ensure they are implemented.
- Update policies, including training policies and procedures, to reflect campus law enforcement best practices and create an on-going review process.
- Traffic and pedestrian stops should not be used as a crime fighting tool by UCPD.
- Office of Safety and Reform should continue to collect and analyze all relevant stop data.
- UCPD should fully implement a policy on biased policing, develop curriculum on the biased policing policy, institute training on the policy and include implicit bias training.
- Draft and implement a single Use of Force Policy that outlines when force is permitted.
- Consider providing UCPD officers CEDs (tasers)
- UCPD should update hiring policies to attract a diverse pool of candidates throughout the recruitment process.
- Develop a Complaint Initiation Procedure
- Integrate data collection systems into one data base to allow UCPD to search, review and analyze data.
"With proper training, equipment and technology UCPD will be best positioned to serve the diverse needs of our community," said James Whalen, director of public safety at UC.
According to school officials, UC has already been working to implement many of the recommended reforms.
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