Appeals court reverses Charleena Lyles case dismissal, sends it on to trial

It took 25 months from beginning to end, but today the Washington State Court of Appeals finally issued a ruling in its review of the dismissal of the Charleena Lyles wrongful death case brought against the City of Seattle and the two police officers who shot and killed her. The appeals court overturned the lower court’s dismissal of the case and set it up to proceed to trial.

Continue reading

Council sends revised crowd-control weapons ordinance to DOJ and police monitor for review

Today the City Council’s Public Safety and Human Services Committee polished off a draft of a revised ordinance placing restrictions on SPD’s use of so-called “less lethal” weapons for crowd control, and sent it off to the Department of Justice and the court-appointed police monitor for comments. In so doing, the Council is signaling that it still feels the need to legislate in this domain while it also recognizes that the terms of the 2012 Consent Decree constrain its ability to do so.

Continue reading

Judge Robart shares “harsh words” for the City Council in consent decree hearing

A lot happened related to police reform and the Consent Decree today, with an extra large helping of political commentary from an unusual source. This morning, the court-appointed police monitor submitted a proposed work plan for 2021 that not only lays out his office’s work but also commits SPD and the triumvirate of police-accountability bodies to specific deliverables and deadlines throughout the year. Then early this afternoon the monitor, the DOJ, and the City of Seattle went in front of U.S. District Court Judge James Robart to explain the plan and express their consensus support for it.

Continue reading