By Cornelius Hocker | WRTV 6 (ABC, Indianapolis)
Oct. 13, 2020
INDIANAPOLIS — A contentious debate between Indianapolis City-County Council Members led up to a late Monday night vote on Proposal 237. The proposal passed by a 19-6 margin.
Proposal 237 will add four civilian members to IMPD’s General Orders Board. The mayor and city-county council president will each appoint the two civilian members. The current General Orders Board currently has three members. All of them are from law enforcement.
Those in favor of the proposal tell WRTV, it’s a welcome change to how things are being run now.
“It allows there to be an added layer of accountability for the police department,” Pastor Kenneth Sullivan, Jr with Faith in Indiana, said.
“We need people who are going to hold them accountable and who are going to demand and insist and press on transparency until it happens,” Jessica Louise, with Indy10 Black Lives Matter, said. “There are so many things and so many questions surrounding what an actual review board looks like that the public does not have input in. It’s time for the public to have input in it.”
Those who opposed the proposal tell WRTV, they support community oversight regarding police affairs, but not this particular proposal.
“This whole proposition needs to be done away with. It’s a step in the wrong direction,” Casey Speer, who opposes the proposal, said. “The part that offends us the most is the fact that people who are a part of the police family are not allowed to be on this committee.”
Those who oppose it also say there’s already community input regarding police policies and procedures.
“When it comes to the chief of police, we already have civilian input on that. That’s through our elected officials and executive branch,” Rick Snyder, president of the Indianapolis Fraternal Order of Police, said. “The Mayor of Indianapolis has the ability to choose a chief of police and that also gets reviewed by the city-county council.”
Civilians will have to complete the Citizen’s Police Academy plus additional training from IMPD on things like use of force. Before Monday night’s vote, Chief Randal Taylor told WRTV that while he has concerns, he’ll work with whoever ends up on the General Orders Board to make sure they are as knowledgeable as possible.