I got a copy of the Executive Summary and here is the full unedited text, with original punctuation, etc. |
ALBINA MINISTERIAL ALLIANCE
REPORT REGARDING THE KENDRA JAMES SHOOTING
September 8, 2003
Both the Investigation and Training and Policy Subcommittee of the AMA Ad-Hoc Committee were commissioned on May 9, 2003. Their charges were to:
- Review the investigative material presented by the Portland Police Department, and the Multnomah County District Attorney's Office to analyse the circumstances surrounding the shooting of Kendra James and determine whether the information supports the conclusions drawn by the PPD [Portland Police Department].
- Review Police and Training Issues that may have affected this case and/or has the potential to influence other cases involgving the use of deadly force.
- Report their findings in an open forum to the Portland Community and based upon their findings, make recommendations for improvements to the PPB and the City of Portland.
Committee Memebers were involved in the review of materials generated by the investigation into the Kendra James shooting. They also reviewed existing manuals, policies and reports and carried out interviews with public officials. The dialogue and deliberation within the committee was for the purpose of analysis and clarification thtat provides support for the conclusions drawn and foundation for the recommendations that are part of the report.
MAJOR FINDINGS AND CONCLUSIONS
- Officer Scott McCollister lied. [McCollister is the officer who shot Kendra James.] There are significant discrepancies in the testimony of the officers the scene, what happened when Kendra James was shot, May 5, 2003. Changes in testimony from before and after the officers dined together at Applebees' restaurant, the flaws in the re-enmnactment video; the report from the State Forensic Lab; Eyewitness accounts and the tradition of non-indictment of Portland Police officers; leads us to conclude that members of the PPB, colluded in a cover-up of the true facts.
- Officer McCollister was in GROSS VIOLATION OF THE USE OF DEADLY FORCE POLICY when he shot Kendra James. The same discrepancies in testimony and failure of the PPB to use pertinent evidence, combined with an attempt at a cover-up leads us to this conclusion.
- The District Attorney partners with the PPB to cover-up police criminal behaviors. There are important questions regarding the District Attorney Office's special treatment of PPB members involved in a fatality resulting from the use of Deadly Force. Officers are granted privilege not extended to ordinary citizens. We have concluded that this practice, intentional or not, supports any effort by an officer to be less than honest or to hide the real facts of a case.
- The finding of State Forensic Lab did not support the findings of the Portland Police Bureau's investigation. While giving considerable weight to the altered testimony of officers at the shooting scene, the PPB ingnored the findings of theState Forensic Lab. In addition, there was a profound difference in the level of inquiry when interviewing the police as compared with interviews of the independent witnesses. We conclude that the difference in the levels of inquiry were done to support the cover-up of the true facts of the case. We conclude that in addition to the officers at the shooting scene, other members of thePPB are culpable in the cover-up effort either by being dishonest about what happened or ignoring policy and best practices when investigating the case.
There were 10 recommendations made to the City of Portland / Portland Police Bureau. Those recommendations ranged from insuring adherence to existing policy to major changes related to policy implemenation and training. It is expected that the City of Portland and the Portland Police Bureau will speak to the cost of implementing the recommendations. In the long run, the cost of human life combined with the costs of revolving lawsuits far exceeds the cost of training the PPB and monitorting the behavior fo Porltand Police Officers.
The City of Portland the PPB must insure that systems are in place to effectively monitor the overall progress and achievement of Bureau goals and objectives, identify areas that need corrective action if these recommendations are to be successfully implemented.