Future of the new community police review board
SOUTH BEND, Ind. --- Community Police Review Board leader Joshua Reynolds has been surrounded by controversy after community members learned he’d been suspended seven times in seven years while serving as a police officer in Indianapolis.
Many council members expressed tonight they don’t feel Reynolds should hold the position any longer, but their attorney shared they do not have any legislative power to dismiss him from the role.
“Right now I don’t think that that is the right person who’s there and I don’t know how you regain that trust right now," said Sheila Niezgodski, Common Council Member.
Reynolds has been facing calls to resign since last week after records show he was suspended several times during his previous employment with the Indianapolis Metro Police Department.
Reynolds was hired for the position largely without community input and now with his previous employment history coming to light the South Bend Common Council wants to subpoena documents to investigate what Reynolds’ previous employment was really like.
“The statute says that when conducting an investigation and this is of any employee of the city the legislative body, that’s us, is entitled to access records pertaining to the investigation and they can compel the attendance of witnesses," said Council Member, Troy Warner.
The council is hoping to work together with the mayor’s office using community members input to find a more diverse individual for the role, but their attorney Bob Palmer says due to conflict of interest they are unable to hire any city employee.
They also do not have any say in whether or not Reynolds gets dismissed from the position, but they will continue to investigate to ensure there is a more well rounded hiring process moving forward.
“In another meeting these questions are answered and then we review information that has come and another discussion is had. It’ll be important to see where the public is in terms of trust," said Council Member, Rachel Tomas Morgan.
The council will gather together again next week to continue discussions on how they will move forward with Reynolds and his position.