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JACKSON POLICE DEPARTMENT

REASON FOR REVIEW

Penal Code Section 925(a) authorizes the Grand Jury to conduct inquiries into the operation and management of law enforcement agencies within the county.

BACKGROUND

The 1999-2000 Grand jury, as part of its annual review process used its discretion to revisit the City of Jackson Police Department. The 1997-1998 Grand Jury Final Report was critical of the management practices of the department. This review is to evaluate progress within the department since the publication of the 97-98 report and the city's response to it. Additionally, this review includes an inspection of grant programs used to support departmental operations.

METHODOLOGY

Persons interviewed:

  1. Past Chief of Police
  2. Administrative Assistant
  3. Sergeant
  4. County Sheriff

Documents examined:

  1. 1997-1998 Amador County Grand Jury Final Report, pages 13-18.
  2. 1998-1999 Amador County Grand Jury Final Report, page 38.
  3. Citizen's Option for Public Safety (COPS) Grant.
  4. Local Law Enforcement Block Grant (LLEBG).
  5. Reserve Officers Joint Powers Agreement.
  6. School Resource Officer Joint Powers Agreement.
  7. 1998 Jackson Police Department Annual Crime Activity Report.
  8. James E. Mayle vs. City of Jackson, Chief of Police, Racial Discrimination.
  9. Mayle vs. City of Jackson, et al, Settlement Agreement.
  10. Claim number 1202849-000, Mayle vs. City of Jackson.
  11. Officer employment applications.
  12. Applications for Chief of Police.
  13. Departmental training records.

FACTS

  1. Grants as reviewed are in order.
  2. The Jackson Police Department continues to conduct discrimination and sexual harassment training using internal resources.
  3. Mayle vs. Jackson cost the city $49,500.00, and its insurer $153,929.66
  4. The Jackson Police Department does not participate in County Law Enforcement Intelligence Meetings.

CONCLUSIONS

Based on persons interviewed, the documents inspected and the facts presented, the Grand Jury reached the following conclusions:

  1. The city is managing its grant programs within the parameters of the grantor's requirements.
  2. In spite of the $49,500.00 cost to the city in Mayle vs. Jackson, the Department continues to assume it is capable of conducting its own training relative to discrimination. In the city's response to the 97-98 Grand Jury's recommendation that outside resources be employed for this purpose it stated, "training provided in-house is both cost effective and more convenient." In light of "Mayle," the city should assure the citizens of Jackson that it is taking the steps necessary to prevent future incidents of discrimination.
  3. The 97-98 Grand Jury made several recommendations regarding the management of the department. One was to cancel the contract with the past Chief (now a moot issue due to his retirement at the end of 1999). It was also their opinion that the city should look for a chief outside the department. Lastly, that the city should consider contracting for police services with the Sheriff's Department. Only one of the recommendations, the hiring of a new Chief, were acted upon. The other two are still valid.

RECOMMENDATIONS

Based on the previous contents of this review, the following are recommended:

  1. To avoid becoming isolated and uninformed, management must be committed to participating in multi-jurisdictional activities, such as the Monthly Law Enforcement Intelligence Meetings, conducted by County law enforcement agencies.
  2. Provide contemporary discrimination training utilizing external experts and resources, following POST guidelines as a minimum.
  3. Continue to apply for available grants to assist in funding operations.

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