Council Members In Washington To Vote On Citizen Police Review Board

Council leaders in the City of Washington meet to vote on whether or not to form a citizens police review board. KDKA's Amy Wadas has more.

Video Transcript

KEN RICE: The city of Washington could soon have a citizen police review board.

KRISTINE SORENSEN: City council is expected to vote on the ordinance during tonight's council meeting. Amy Wadas has more outside city hall, with what we can expect.

ANDREW GOUDY: And I'm hoping today's the day.

AMY WADAS: President of the Washington chapter of the NAACP, Andrew Goudy, is the man behind it all. He spearheaded the idea to get a citizen police review board that would oversee the city of Washington police.

ANDREW GOUDY: When police come into the Black community, they're not viewed as somebody there to protect you, they're viewed as somebody to fear.

AMY WADAS: So he wanted to change that mentality, and he feels creating an oversight board is a good start.

JOE MANNING: I know that when this was initially brought up, the first thing I did was go to the police department and ask how many complaints have you had, and the number was zero.

AMY WADAS: Manning says no allegations of misconduct or abuse of power, but he also said Goudy did bring up concerns that people are hesitant to file a complaint with police, something resident Gwendolyn Gordon says she's heard from other people.

GWENDOLYN GORDON: They say sometimes they give complaints, and the police don't take it up, don't take it seriously or whatever.

AMY WADAS: While Gordon feels the police are doing a good job, she thinks a police review board is a great idea.

GWENDOLYN GORDON: Just in case because you never know. And the way things are going nowadays, just like I said, you never know.

AMY WADAS: Other residents feel a board will bring the community together.

ROBIN JACKSON: I do believe that we got a duty to come together and be able to talk about what's going on, so we can settle it.

AMY WADAS: City council said time will tell and stressed that everyone must be on the same page.

JOE MANNING: In Morgantown, West Virginia, they passed a similar ordinance, and the police union there, the FOP, filed a suit against the city of Morgantown.