Memphians push for citizen board review for MPD - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Memphians push for citizen board review for MPD

(Photo Source: WMC Action News 5) (Photo Source: WMC Action News 5)

Some Memphis residents are pushing for a Citizen Review Board for Memphis Police department.

Mid-South Peace and Justice's Paul Garner asked the City Council Public Safety Committee for action on the 6-year-old decision to bring back the Memphis Civilian Law Enforcement Review.

"This city council voted on a resolution that tasked the city council and MPD with going out and collecting input on how to improve law enforcement back in 2009," said Garner. "That committee never met."

Since then, Mid-South Peace and Justice has met with people across the city. They say it's time for an amendment.

However, Memphis Police Association President Mike Williams is unsure of the decision to allow the board the right to subpoena documents and issue recommendations.

"I have issues with subpoena powers," Williams explained. "Especially with officers, they can invoke their fifth amendment rights just like any other citizen. They have rights just like any other citizen."

Williams said that Citizen Review Board members typically have an agenda, and in the past, he felt that members were trying to sabotage the whole operation.

Garner says his group just wants law enforcement to be held accountable for their actions with more transparency.

Before anything is official, both groups need to meet with city leaders.

Garner is excited about the prospect of that meeting and his goal becoming a reality.

"Hopefully, in two weeks when we're back, our request for a meeting will have been honored," he said.

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