January 12, 2016, Meeting
MINUTES OF THE
BOARD OF POLICE COMMISSIONERS MEETING
TUESDAY, JANUARY 12, 2016
A meeting of the Board of Police Commissioners of Kansas City, Missouri was held on Tuesday, January 12, 2016 at KCPD Headquarters, Community Room, Kansas City.
Commissioner Michael C. Rader, President
Commissioner Leland M. Shurin, Vice President
Commissioner Angela Wasson-Hunt, Treasurer
Commissioner Alvin Brooks, Member
Mayor Sylvester “Sly” James, Jr., Member
Darryl Forté, Chief of Police
Mr. David V. Kenner, Secretary/Attorney
This meeting was called to order at 10:05 a.m. by Commissioner Rader. Rev. Keith Ratcliffe provided the invocation.
- Awards and Commendations.
The Certificate of Appreciation was presented to Mr. Todd DeMint for his professionalism, compassion, and outstanding assistance to the KCPD. Mr. DeMint, the Vice President of Meyers Funeral Chapel in Parkville, Missouri, coordinated the funeral services at no charge for the widow of Officer Charles Williams who passed away unexpectedly on August 16, 2015.
The Lifesaving Award was presented to Officer Mario Moore for his commendable actions in a life or death situation. Officer Moore saved a woman who was intent on taking her own life by consuming a lethal dose of narcotic pills. Officer Moore administered CPR on the woman; by the time EMS arrived, she was breathing.
The Meritorious Service Award was presented to Supervisors Dawn Deterding and Andrea Kahn for displaying exceptional initiative, tenacity, and expertise. Supervisors Deterding and Kahn were tasked with researching, recommending, and implementing an emergency notification system that the police department could use for critical incidents. After many months of research, Supervisors Deterding and Kahn selected the Everbridge system, and both supervisors remain the system administrators for KCPD.
The Certificate of Appreciation was presented to FBI Special Agent Trish McCormick for her outstanding assistance to the Kansas City Police Department. The Certificate of Commendation was presented to Officer Isaac Freestone and Detective Cory Horalek for their tenacity, hard work, and exceptional teamwork. Officers Horalek and Freestone worked with the FBI on a case involving PCP that was coming to Kansas City from California. The suspect in the case, Walter Sorrells, was a major supplier of PCP, cocaine, and marijuana for Kansas City street gangs. During the investigation officers stopped a drug mule transporting more than a gallon of PCP and a kilo of cocaine on a train from California to Kansas City. The investigation concluded with multi-count federal indictments for 20 defendants for narcotics trafficking, conspiracy to distribute narcotics, possession of narcotics, and money laundering.
The Distinguished Service Medal was presented to Officer Jacob Phillips for performing a dangerous and distinguished act that exceeds the performance of that which is normally expected. Officer Phillips and other officers, to include the MSHP, responded to a call of domestic violence where a suspect had assaulted family members with a wooden pole and who was now armed with a sword. MSHP officers ordered the suspect to drop the sword and the suspect refused to do so and continued to move toward officers. Officer Phillips fired at the suspect, who ultimately died from his injuries. The Platte County Prosecutor’s Office ruled that the officers were justified in using lethal force against the suspect.
The Board took a recess at 10:17 a.m. and resumed at 10:25 a.m.
- Councilperson Alissia Canady. Councilperson Canady provided a brief update of the Public Safety Committee. Councilperson Canady said last year was a very eventful year for the Public Safety Committee with tragic events involving first responders and a spike in homicides. She said the goal of the Committee for 2016, is to enhance their efforts to be more collaborative to help ensure the safety of the residents of Kansas City.
Councilperson Canady advised that the Mayor’s Task Force on Violence will convene this evening for their first meeting. This task force is chaired by Councilperson Jolie Justus.
Councilperson Canady said the Public Safety Committee will have some updates this coming week from Regulated Industries as it relates to alcohol enforcement and party houses.
- City Architect’s report. Mr. Bosch said the construction company is on day 34 of of NPD project, working on footings, which came to a halt due to the recent snow.
Mr. Bosch said work continues on the outside of the new EPD and at the crime lab. Commissioner Brooks said the new EPD is the “talk of the town.”
- Public comments. Former Councilman John Sharp said he wants to thank Chief Forté for his suggestion of training police officers to use de-escalation techniques in situations where someone is acting irrationally, but not necessarily posing an immediate danger to themselves or others. Mr. Sharp attended the POST Commission hearings at Penn Valley Community College. He noted that the new POST standards have added de-escalation training.
- Approval of minutes.
Commissioner Wasson-Hunt asked for a correction to page 8 of the minutes.
A motion was made by Commissioner Wasson-Hunt, with a second by Commissioner Shurin, to approve the minutes of the open session of the December 15, 2015, board meeting. The vote was 5-0 in favor.
- Chief Darryl Forté. Chief Forté asked that everyone keep Officer Nate Harrison and his family in their prayers.
Chief Forté said the police department needs to do a better job of teaching the community why they do what they do, procedurally, etc.
The Chief said he wants the police department to change from a fear-based management style to using respect-based practices. To that end, the Chief wants to reward courageous acts that invite positive changes. Chief Forté wants to end the “us versus them” mentality within the department and in the community.
Chief Forté said the Economic Crimes Section continues to visit senior centers to discuss crimes that can impact the elderly.
Chief Forté said it is important for the police department to have employees that have a connection with the community.
The police department is looking at different methods of personnel deployment.
Chief Forté said he would be in support of public apology legislation. The Chief said there are times that he would like to apologize and offer condolences to families of those who have had altercations with the police, without incurring additional liability.
The Chief said the police department is still researching the topic of body worn cameras and that the police department will not implement them until we have a sound policy in place. Additionally, he wants to hold public meetings to discuss the use of the cameras to let the community know what information can and cannot be released from these recordings.
With regard to violent crime, Chief Forté said that statistics show that 75 percent of these crimes occur within 34 square miles of Kansas City from St. John Avenue to 85th Street, and Troost Avenue to Topping. These areas have a low rate of home ownership, a low rate of school attendance, excessive trash, and abandoned properties. While the Department is asking for budgetary authority to hire 60 more officers, it may be appropriate to hire 55 more officers, with the City using the funds for five officers to demolish abandoned buildings.
Chief Forté said we need to do something to lower the rate of homicides and violence in the city, he encouraged everyone to build relationships within the community.
Chief said the police department will continue to hold open houses, he will continue his one-on-one positive contacts with people, and the police department will continue to do hold community events in the park.
The Chief commended KC Nova, saying it has been the best program the department has implemented in years.
Commissioner Rader inquired about the cluster of homicides and asked what the police department can do to address this. Chief Forté said that family members of homicide victims often express that they are not surprised that their family member was murdered. Again, the Chief reiterated that we must build relationships and trust within the community before these tragic events occur.
Commissioner Rader asked if the radius of 75 percent of violent crimes and the personnel deployment issue is synonymous with hot spot policing. The Chief said yes, hot spot policing officers work at Center zone, Metro, and East zone every Friday and Saturday night.
Commissioner Brooks commended the Chief for his leadership and vision that he has brought to the police department in his four years as Chief of Police.
- Executive Services Bureau. Deputy Chief Higgins presented the following items for Board approval:
a. Acceptance of KCATA MOU. A memorandum dated December 29, 2015, recommended Board approval for acceptance of the new KCATA MOU which provides for reimbursement of salary and benefits for two full-time, sworn members to assist the KCATA. The estimated amount to be reimbursed during the first year is $307,458.14, plus the program related overtime costs.
A motion was made by Commissioner Brooks, with a second by Mayor James to approve the MOU with KCATA. The vote was 5-0 in favor.
b. Budget transfers for FY 2015-16. A memorandum dated December 31, 2015, recommended budget transfers that will affect the general fund, police drug enforcement fund, and the police grants fund. This memorandum is marked Attachment “A” and is made a part of these minutes.
A motion was made by Commissioner Wasson-Hunt, with a second by Mayor James to approve the budget transfers as presented. The vote was 5-0 in favor.
c. Department wireless service, WSCA cooperative procurement contract. A memorandum dated January 4, 2016, recommended approval for the award of a one-year renewal to provide wireless service through the Western States Contracting Alliance. The total estimated annual expenditure, to include a 10 percent fluctuation cost, will be $817,607.76. The renewal period is February 1, 2016, through January 31, 2017. The primary carrier remains Sprint.
A motion was made by Commissioner Rader, with a second by Commissioner Shurin to approve the one-year contract utilizing WSCA for the total anticipated expenditure of $817,607.76. The vote was 5-0 in favor.
d. Supplemental appropriations for FY 2015-16. A memorandum dated January 6, 2016, recommending that the Board accept additional funding from the City of $840,000 for items required to complete the EPD/Crime Lab project. This memorandum is marked Attachment “B” and is made a part of these minutes.
A motion was made by Mayor James, with a second by Commissioner Wasson-Hunt to accept the additional funding in the amount of $840,000. The vote was 5-0 in favor.
e. EPD/Crime Lab furniture, fixtures, and equipment. A memorandum dated January 5, 2016, recommended approval of the purchase of furniture, fixtures, and equipment utilizing cooperative procurement contracts, GSA contracts, and sole source purchases for a total expenditure of $840,000.
A motion was made by Commissioner Wasson-Hunt, with a second by Commissioner Shurin to approve the purchase of items required to complete the EPD/Crime Lab project for a total expenditure of $840,000. The vote was 5-0 in favor.
f. Cisco Smartnet maintenance renewal. A memorandum dated January 11, 2016, recommended approval to purchase Smartnet maintenance from Alexander Open Systems, for replacement and maintenance on critical pieces of Cisco network equipment for a total expenditure of $142,530.04.
A motion was made by Commissioner Rader, with a second by Mayor James to purchase Smartnet maintenance from Alexander Open Systems for a total expenditure of $142,530.04. The vote was 5-0 in favor.
g. COPS Hiring Program grants. Major Mark Francisco provided a brief update on this topic. He explained that in March, 2015, the police department was notified that DOJ would perform an audit and site visit. This visit took place in June, 2015, and the compliance officer met with department staff to determine how personnel were being utilized that were hired under the COPS grant and how the police department was seeking reimbursement for their salaries. In August, 2015, the police department received notification from the COPS grant office there were two areas of non-compliance and a request for additional information. The initial amount of non-allowable costs was $593,000. The police department provided the requested information and received notification from the COPS office in October, 2015, that no additional information was needed. In December, 2015, The police department received a letter from the COPS office which indicated that there was still $135,000 that they deemed non-allowable. They considered the fringe benefits as non-allowable costs and the police department disagrees. The police department is in the process of filing an appeal this week.
8. Professional Development and Research Bureau.
Deputy Chief Bob Kuehl submitted the basic training class summary for January 2016.
Deputy Chief Kuehl asked that the Board table the following consent agenda item: Project #892, Personnel Policy, Uniform and Personnel Appearance Regulations.
- Investigations Bureau.
Deputy Chief Rose said that to-date 2016, there have been eight homicides compared to three in 2015.
She said 2,749 cases were presented to the prosecutor, and 1,884 were filed year-to-date for 2015.
Year-to-date for 2015, there have been 257 drive-by shootings compared to 202 for the same time period in 2014.
Deputy Chief Rose said that pursuant to a request from the Board, the Professional Development & Research Bureau conducted research into whether or not other agencies use any initiatives to thwart drive-by shootings. No initiatives were found.
Commissioner Brooks said that he continues to plead with the parents of young African American males to stay involved with them and know what they are doing to help keep weapons out of the hands of these young men.
Mayor James said that since 2010 until today there has been a “meteoric rise” in the number of drive-by shootings. Mayor James said we live in a city that if a police officer encounters someone in a car with a weapon, he is not able to confiscate the weapon due to the gun laws in Missouri. Mayor James said in this country we are watching people die needlessly due to the proliferation of guns and the country is failing to do anything about it.
Mayor James said there must be something that can be done about these drive-by shootings. Chief Forté said the police department is open to suggestions and we are doing the best we can. Chief Forté said there are many issues tied to drive-by shooting such as individual responsibility, family upbringing, and mental illness.
Mayor James said there are bills being proposed that could eliminate the Kansas City earnings tax, which would have devastating consequences on the City budget. He said the earnings tax provides $238 million dollars to a $500 million dollar general fund, and 72 percent of this is used for public safety. Mayor James said there are no funds in the budget to replace the loss of the earnings tax. Without the earnings tax City departments, including public safety, would be forced to severely reduce staff and this could put the City close to bankruptcy. Mayor James said he will travel to Jefferson City this week to testify before the Senate committee to stand up against the elimination of the earnings tax. Chief Forté said the two police department lobbyists are in Jefferson City now and the Chief will travel there this week as well.
- Human Resources.
Director Nick Nichols presented the personnel summary dated January 7, 2016. Current department strength is 1,354 law enforcement and 544 civilians.
- Administration Bureau. Deputy Chief Randy Hundley presented the Regional Criminalistics Division monthly statistics for January, 2016. Deputy Chief Hundley thanked members of the Administration Bureau for all of their hard work.
- Patrol Bureau. Deputy Chief David Zimmerman presented the monthly crime summary dated November 2015. A copy of the Crime Summary is marked as Attachment “C” and is attached to these minutes.
Deputy Chief Zimmerman submitted the Traffic Summary for the month of December 2015, as well as the 2015 Year-End Fatality Report. These reports are marked attachment “D” and “E” respectively.
Commissioner Shurin inquired about the number of citations issued for failure to use a seatbelt and child restraints, and asked if there was a separate breakdown for the two. Deputy Chief Zimmerman said that currently the two are not tracked separately, however, it will be on future reports.
Mayor James asked if there are any concerns about response times. Deputy Chief Zimmerman said that the police department is working on developing a new statistical report for response times, and that generally speaking the biggest spikes or dips are in the larger zones, such as NPD and SCPD. In these zones, there can be just one event that will keep 4-5 officers busy, causing a delayed response to other calls.
- Office of Community Complaints. Ms. Pearl Fain presented the 4th quarter report for the Office of Community Complaints. In addition, she submitted the OCC semi-annual report. During the month of December 2015, OCC received a total of 13 complaints and of those, eight complaints were sent to IAU for investigation. Also, during the month of December 2015, OCC submitted 11 recommendations to the Chief’s Office and none were sustained.
Ms. Fain said that for the year, 2015, OCC received a total of 326 complaints. This was a 17 percent decrease compared to 2014, in which there were 393 complaints for the year. She is not sure of the reason for the decline in complaints.
- Audit Committee update. Commissioner Angela Wasson-Hunt had nothing to report from the Audit Committee. Commissioner Wasson-Hunt said that the City Auditor indicates that the take-home vehicle audit should be ready for presentation in early March 2016.
- Fraternal Order of Police Lodge No. 99. Sgt. Brad Lemon said that the FOP adopted 45 children last Christmas, who were in foster care. He hopes that the FOP can adopt 90 children next Christmas.
Sgt. Lemon said the grand opening for the FOP Lodge is January 22, 2016, from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., and everyone is invited.
Sgt. Lemon said the Western States Conference is coming up in late March, early April, 2016.
Sgt. Lemon said he has been working with the lobbyist on a peer counseling bill that will be filed today. Additionally, Sgt. Lemon will travel to Jefferson City on Thursday in support of the earnings tax.
- Mr. David V. Kenner.
Mr. Kenner advised that regular Board meetings have been tentatively scheduled for the entire year. In addition, a short meeting is required at the end of April to approve the year end fiscal year budget transfers.
- Scheduled meetings.
Tuesday, February 9, 2016
10:00 a.m., KCPD Headquarters, Community Room
1125 Locust, Kansas City
Tuesday, March 8, 2016
10:00 a.m., KCPD Headquarters, Community Room
1125 Locust, Kansas City
In the matter of the disciplinary proceedings of P.O. Herschel Rodgers
Friday, April 15, 2016
8:00 a.m., KCPD Headquarters, Community Room
1125 Locust, Kansas City
- Commissioner Leland M. Shurin. Commissioner Shurin said he is very much in support of taking our time in implementing body worn cameras. Commissioner Shurin said he believes these cameras would be helpful to officers, however, he has concerns.
Commissioner Shurin expressed his concern about potentially losing the earnings tax.
- Commissioner Angela Wasson-Hunt. Commissioner Wasson-Hunt thanked former Commissioner Lisa Pelofsky for her fundraising efforts for the Police Foundation and for their donation of a new canine.
- Commissioner Michael C. Rader. Commissioner Rader thanked everyone for attending the meeting today and said that no one cares more about the safety of our City than our police officers. Commissioner Rader said that at every meeting we give awards to officers who risk their own lives to save others.
Commissioner Rader thanked Mayor James for his appearance on Nightline earlier this week.
- Commissioner Alvin Brooks. Commissioner Brooks asked Deputy Chief Patty Higgins to please pass on the Board’s thanks to members of the Communications Unit for their good work saying they do a “masterful job.” Commissioner Brooks encouraged his colleagues on the Board to spend some time in the Communications Unit to see them work.
Commissioner Brooks said the crime lab, in conjunction with Phillips-West Public Relations, recently hosted students from Lincoln College Preparatory Academy and Central Academy of Excellence, to engage in mock crime scene investigator training at the lab which was entitled, CSI-KC; a six week program. Director Linda Netzel introduced Ms. Carrie Stapleton, President of Phillips-West Public Relations. A video was shown of the students participating in this crime scene investigator training and the students reported that they enjoyed it very much. Ms. Stapleton presented an award to Director Netzel.
A motion was made by Commissioner Brooks, and seconded by Commissioner Shurin and by vote indicated below, to adjourn its open meeting at 12:15 p.m. and reconvene in closed session as provided in the following resolution. Following a roll call, the vote was 5-0 in favor.
WHEREAS, notice of the board meeting of the Board of Police Commissioners was given on October 15, 2015, and
WHEREAS, said notice indicated that the Board of Police Commissioners might go into closed session during said meeting, and
WHEREAS, notice of the closed meeting follows the guidelines of Section 610.020 of the Revised Statutes of Missouri.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Board of Police Commissioners go into closed session during the meeting being held on Tuesday, January 12, 2016, at KCPD Headquarters, Kansas City, for the purpose of discussing personnel matters, litigation matters, and labor negotiations.
The following Commissioners were present and voted to go into closed session as follows:
Commissioner Alvin L. Brooks – Aye
Commissioner Angela Wasson-Hunt – Aye
Commissioner Michael C. Rader – Aye
Commissioner Leland M. Shurin – Aye
Mayor Sylvester “Sly” James, Jr. – Aye
There being a quorum present and the question of holding a closed session having received an affirmative public vote of at least three (3) members, a closed meeting was held as set forth above.
Below are the votes from the closed session of the Board of Police Commissioners meeting on January 12, 2016:
1) Following a motion by Commissioner Rader and a second by Commissioner Wasson-Hunt, the Board voted to approve the application for continued employment of Detective Wayne Fitzner. The vote was 5-0 in favor. Following polling, Mayor James voted aye, Commissioner Wasson-Hunt voted aye, Commissioner Brooks voted aye, Commissioner Shurin voted aye, and Commissioner Rader voted aye.
2) Following a motion by Commissioner Wasson-Hunt, and a second by Commissioner Brooks, the Board voted to approve the minutes of the closed meeting of the Board of Police Commissioners on December 15, 2015. The vote was 5-0 in favor. Following polling, Mayor James voted aye, Commissioner Wasson-Hunt voted aye, Commissioner Brooks voted aye, Commissioner Shurin voted aye, and Commissioner Rader voted aye.
3) Following a motion by Commissioner Wasson-Hunt and a second by Mayor James, the Board voted to go into special closed session to discuss personnel matters. The vote was 5-0 in favor. Following polling, Mayor James voted aye, Commissioner Wasson-Hunt voted aye, Commissioner Brooks voted aye, Commissioner Shurin voted aye, and Commissioner Rader voted aye.
Mayor James left the meeting at 12:50 p.m.
4) Following a motion by Commissioner Shurin and a second by Commissioner Brooks, the Board voted to come out of special closed session and adjourn. The vote was 4-0 in favor. Following polling, Commissioner Wasson-Hunt voted aye, Commissioner Brooks voted aye, Commissioner Shurin voted aye, and Commissioner Rader voted aye.
The meeting adjourned at 12:54 p.m.
Board of Police Commissioner Minutes