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Tallahassee's Citizens Police Review Board can meet after almost one year

Posted at 5:47 PM, Sep 28, 2023
  • Six new members selected to the Citizens Police Review Board will allow them to meet for the first time in 10 months.
  • Christian Minor was one of the six appointed. He is excited to build a better relationship between the community and law enforcement.
  • The League of Women Voters nominated Debra Barrett-Hayes, a former educator.

BROADCAST TRANSCRIPT:

10 - that's the number of months it's been since the Citizens Police Review Board has met in Tallahassee.

Nine - that's how many neighbors should be on the board.

Six - that's the number of new neighbors just placed on the board.

I'm taking a closer look at what's kept the board from meeting and the impact they're supposed have on all of Tallahassee's neighborhoods.

Christian Minor said transparency and oversight is important.

"Accountability is everything," Minor said. "I think this board has a great opportunity to lead and build that trust."

That board: the Citizen's Police Review Board.

Minor is one of the six newest members.
It's a group that was formed in Tallahassee in 2020.

The goal of the review board is to look over TPD internal affairs when it comes to use of force or other issues important to the community.

"The point of the board is to enhance transparency, enhance communication and build that relationship of trust between Tallahassee and the police department," Minor said.

The board has not met in 10 months after three members were removed.

One for a controversial sticker on a drink container, two others for sharing emails with others, violating sunshine law.

After the board's hiatus, Minor said he's ready to get to work.

"Law enforcement plays such a critical role in our community and we also have to be smart in how we approach crime," Minor said.

Five of the members are appointed by local organizations, including the League of Women Voters.

President of the league Trish Neely said the group is essential to creating trust between law enforcement and the community.

"The job that the review board does, I mean, again it goes back to that level of transparency but having the opportunity to look at some of the actions the police have taken and just make sure everything that is being done is up to police standards," Neely said.

She nominated Debra Barrett-Hayes, a retired educator to the board.

Neely said she will be a great addition.

"I spoke with her this morning and she says she's starting to work right away," Neely said. "She's delighted to roll up her sleeves and get into it."

Minor said he is glad to help uplift the voices of neighbors across Tallahassee.

"I'm looking forward to the opportunity to serve and to go ahead and finally meet, take a look at what's going on and reviewing cases were there was use of force," Minor said.

While the board now has eight members, there is still one seat left.

City leaders say the board should be full in October.