Charlottesville finalizes members of police civilian review board

Charlottesville finalizes members of police civilian review board
Charlottesville Police Department (FILE) (Source: WVIR)

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — Officials in a Virginia city have appointed a final member to a police oversight panel, allowing the group to soon begin its work.

The Charlottesville City Council unanimously approved the appointment of Phillip Seay to the city’s Police Civilian Review Board on Monday, news outlets reported. Work on the board began in 2017 as a way improve trust between the police department and community following a deadly white nationalist rally in the city.

The board’s seven voting members were appointed in February and officials had since been searching for an eighth member, who was required to be a nonvoting member with law enforcement experience.

Seay was the only applicant for the position, The Daily Progress reported. He worked as an Appomattox County Sheriff’s deputy for six years and was a juvenile probation counselor in Lynchburg for about two years, the newspaper said.

An initial meeting for the board was scheduled for March, but was canceled amid the coronavirus pandemic. Charlottesville Councilor Lloyd Snook said Tuesday that the board could begin virtual meetings, but it was unclear whether any were scheduled.

Protesters have called for law enforcement accountability during nationwide demonstrations decrying police killings of black people. The unrest began after the death of George Floyd, a handcuffed black man who died after a white Minneapolis police officer pressed his knee on his neck for more than eight minutes as he pleaded for air.

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