- Associated Press - Saturday, December 19, 2015

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) - The Steamboat Springs City Council has reversed course and decided to give the public a more thorough summary of a recent internal police investigation.

The decision to be more transparent came after a former police detective and police officer accused the city’s top police officials of creating a hostile work environment. They also complained about what they called heavy-handed policing.

Council members said they believe public disclosure is needed to restore the public’s trust in the police department, the council and city administrators. The decision comes after the council on Dec. 1 voted against releasing more information.

“We’re not going to make everybody happy,” Councilwoman Kathi Meyer said. “But we need to restore trust and come up with a strategy that puts this to bed as best we can, knowing it may never fully go away.”

New Police Chief Cory Christensen will produce the summary of the investigation’s findings and present it to the council on Jan. 12, Steamboat Today reported (https://tinyurl.com/hqqm3at ). The council will review the report and decide what to make public.

Christensen and council members said the summary will address the wide range of allegations that were made against the police department’s top officials, who left after the initial investigation concluded.

The decision to withhold information angered some residents.

“You have a black cloud hanging over you,” Steamboat resident Bill Peck told the council before it voted to seek the new summary. “You can do something about it. I would like to see a little light.”

Council member Scott Ford said he still wants to know if the investigator found a paramilitary culture, whether a ticket citation quota existed and whether training stressed violent tactics that were among allegations council members asked to be investigated.


Information from: Steamboat Pilot & Today, https://steamboatpilot.com/



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