Important Message for Eureka and it’s City Council members

city of eureka

Tonight’s Eureka City Council meeting seems like a routine type of affair. However, two agenda items are way too important to be voted upon during the general consent calendar. Item #3 and Item #5 are regarding the claims from the McClain family for the wrongful death of Tommy McClain.

Before the previous council changed the rules any member of the public could step up to podium during public comment time and request an item be pulled from the consent calendar for discussion. However, now the rule is “All matters listed under this category are considered to be routine by the City Council and will be enacted by one motion. Pursuant to City Council Resolution 2011-22, if a member of the public would like an item on the Consent Calendar pulled and discussed separately, the request shall be made to a Councilmember prior to the meeting. Unless a specific request is made by a Councilmember, the Consent Calendar will not be read. There will be no separate discussion of these items.”

Apparently, City Staff consider the claims against the City for the killing of Tommy McClain to be “routine”. We don’t. The Examiner on behalf of our many readers is asking one of our “progressive majority” council members to pull items #3 and #5 be pulled for discussion.

We understand that REMIF and your City Attorney will insist that you reject the claims out of hand. We also understand that the Council members may not wish to discuss these specific claims. However, that doesn’t mean that the Council should be totally silent. In fact, this is the perfect time for the Council Members to speak out to their constituents. It is time for a true Civilian Review Board in Eureka. Not some biased Chief Mills handpicked “advisory panel”, but a truly independent board with members appointed by the elected council. They should for the most part not be employed by local government or be relatives of government employees, but should represent a broad cross section of Eureka residents.

Now is the time to make it happen!

Update: from Linda Atkins = Items 3 and 5 are being pulled for public discussion.   

 

Important reading for Council members from the recently released:

“Presidents task force on 21st century policing”

http://www.cops.usdoj.gov/PolicingTaskForce

“Law enforcement agencies should have comprehensive policies on the use of force that include training, investigations, prosecutions, data collection, and information sharing. These policies must be clear, concise, and openly available for public inspection.”

“These policies should also mandate external and independent criminal investigations in cases of police use of force resulting in death, officer-involved shootings resulting in injury or death, or in-custody deaths.”

“Policies on use of force should also require agencies to collect, maintain, and report data to the Federal Government on all officer-involved shootings, whether fatal or nonfatal, as well as any in-custody death.”

“Some form of civilian oversight of law enforcement is important in order to strengthen trust with the community. Every community should define the appropriate form and structure of civilian oversight to meet the needs of that community.”

“Citizen Review is not an advocate for the community or for the police. This impartiality allows oversight to bring stakeholders together to work collaboratively and proactively to help make policing more effective and responsive to the community. Civilian oversight alone is not sufficient to gain legitimacy; without it, however, it is difficult, if not impossible, for the police to maintain the public’s trust.”

 

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10 thoughts on “Important Message for Eureka and it’s City Council members

  1. I don’t live in Eureka, but I very much appreciate your coverage of these issues. They are important for everyone, everywhere. Thank you.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. I’m glad to see that the items were pulled for public discussion. Good job Linda!

    Liked by 4 people

  3. consent calender?..shouldn’t that be some ‘closed door’ session where legalities and lawsuits are discussed?

    This consent calender item means theoretically no discussion, the Brown Act requires all discussion at a certain level be public, the closed door meetings are legal via the Brown Act I think, not a lawyer haha.

    So by putting action votes taken without discussion implies either
    1. city council members are rubber stampers, not in the loop.

    AND/OR

    2. plenty of ‘adult’ conversation before the meeting, the real closed door meetings, perhaps including phone calls and phone meetings, emails..Brown Act people, somebody better know about it who is paid to know about it. Not me, I’m just a mutt.

    And also this highlights why the fed DOJ needs to ride in here and do some serious threat down….like in Oakland, like in Seattle.

    An outmaneuvered city council, a Police Chief Black Belt Master Spinner, a dysfunctional police culture yet to be reformed, and many criticisms of the city attorney seem to be sticking. hmmm.
    And I appreciate the good officers in EPD, keep at it people, things have got to get better.

    Thanks Linda Atkins and whoever else got this off ‘Consent’. geez.

    Sure, maybe it will turn out to be Obvious Step 54 of 3,4565…but Consent Calender?

    woof….

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Not too far off topic, here’s a town’s solution to it’s poverty:

    http://minnesota.cbslocal.com/2015/03/01/stillwater-residents-can-pay-tickets-with-canned-food/

    that’s as different from the Ferguson Solution as a town can get.
    Ferguson Mo., where the white majority methodically has heavily policed, fined, jailed and stripped the last bit of money left from the poor and black part of town.

    Watching starving homeless and the mentally ill eat ancient crap food left in dumpsters is so common here.

    That’s maybe a thing to do here with (maybe or maybe not) any new traffic enforcements with the new slower speed limits.

    I watch for this Ferguson thinking, they are not the only town that does that, just the most famous for it.

    But after the Shopping Cart crackdown, the GMOB parade, could this be planned here?…… the Ferguson Solution.

    I offer the Stillwater Solution.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I agree. This is really one of the most important, under reported local stories. I’m thankful the TE is staying on top of it. I hope that the tragic death of Tommy may be used as a catalyst for change. This isn’t a political issue, it’s a community issue.

      Liked by 3 people

  5. Disappointing turn out. So sad. I wonder if it’s apathy, or disgust that people feel toward their council. I was glad that at least a few folks spoke in support of the McClain family. However, if change is to be made, the council will have to feel the pressure. IMHO

    Liked by 2 people

    • Disgust for the new, super progressive, all girl council already? Sounds like buyer’s remorse is setting in.

      Like

  6. Lets say for argument sake that tommy mcclain had a unload BB gun tucked in his waistband. He didnt point it at anybody. He did not know that the officers were lurking across the street in the dark. So ya lets say he had one are the officers justified in killing him because of a misdemeanor charge………. 13.63.020 Unlawful activities involving replica or simulated firearms.

    Every person who, except in self-defense, in the presence of any other person, draws, exhibits or brandishes a replica firearm, or who simulates a firearm in a rude, angry and threatening manner, or who in any manner unlawfully uses the same in any fight or quarrel and causes the victim to reasonably believe that the person is actually in possession of an operable firearm, is guilty of a misdemeanor. ………………………………….

    Like

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