Members of a new police oversight board have been introduced at Philadelphia City Hall.
The task of the Police Community Oversight board is to implement changes demanded by the U.S. Justice Department after it reviewed how Philadelphia officers use deadly force.
The goals of the board are “to advance our efforts to create a more responsive, more ethical and more service-oriented Philadelphia police department,” said Mayor Michael Nutter.
Rodney Muhammad, who heads of the Philadelphia Chapter of the NAACP says he wants to see police respect everyone.
“Today, police brutality the kinds of things that we see in excessive force and blatant misconduct is not seen as an outlaw act, and that’s a problem,” Muhammad said.
Mayor Nutter says implementing reforms cannot and will not be done overnight.
The new board does not replace the Police Advisory Commission, but that group routinely has been stymied by the department as it tries to investigate alleged misconduct.
The justice department report said Philadelphia police had a rudimentary understanding of when they should be allowed to use deadly force. It called for comprehensive and on-going training on use of force.
Joanne Epps, Dean of the Temple University Beasley School of Law, is chair of the board. Ms. Epps formerly served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in Philadelphia and a Deputy City Attorney in Los Angeles and has taught law at Temple University for almost 30 years.
The other members of the Police Community Oversight Board are:
– Nina Ahmad, Executive VP, JNA Capital and chair of the Mayors Commission on Asian American Affairs
– Kelvyn Anderson, Executive Director, Police Advisory Commission
– Kenneth Naroen Chin, 1 Love Movement
– Richard Costello, Political Coordinator, FOP Lodge #5
– Edwin Desamour, Executive Director, MIMIC Inc. (Men in Motion in the Community)
– Liz Dow, CEO, Leadership Philadelphia, Inc.
– Joe Garcia, Captain for Communications, Training & Development, Temple University Police
– Charles Gibbs, Attorney, The Green Firm
– Councilman Bobby Henon, 6th Councilmanic District
– Abby Stamelman Hocky, Executive Director, Interfaith Center of Greater Philadelphia
– John Hollway, Executive Director, Quattrone Center for the Fair Administration of Justice at Penn Law
– Carlton Johnson, Attorney, Archer & Greiner
– Dorothy Johnson Speight, Executive Director, Mothers In Charge
– Damone Jones, Senior Pastor, Bibleway Baptist Church
– Councilman Curtis Jones, 4th Councilmanic District
– Rue Landau, Executive Director, Human Relations Commission
– Mohammad Rizwan Mallick, local business owner
– Rodney Muhammed, President, Philadelphia Chapter of the NAACP
– Councilwoman Maria Quiñones-Sánchez, 7th Councilmanic District
– Pedro Ramos, Attorney, Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis
– Ellen Somekawa, Exec. Director, FACTS Charter School
– Joy Soto, Executive Director, Philadelphia Youth Commission
– Alan Yatvin, Attorney, Popper & Yatvin