Tensions Flare at Council Meeting after Chief Brackney's Schedule Comes to Light
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Charlottesville community and Police Civilian Review Board members are demanding answers and transparency from the city and police department.
At the City Council meeting on Monday, May 6, emotions ran high as several people made their voices heard.
Over the past few weeks, the Civilian Review Board, the city, and the police department have gone back and forth regarding the police chief's availability to meet with the board.
That battle boiled over at Monday night’s meeting.
“We take these positions with Chief Brackney like she can do absolutely no right,” Councilor Wes Bellamy said.
Tempers flared at Monday night’s City Council meeting as members of the public shut down Bellamy's attempts to defend Police Chief RaShall Brackney.
“You all don't see everything that's on the calendar and if there's an hour block, is she not allowed time to eat?” Bellamy said.
This comes following a Daily Progress article that includes Chief Brackney's calendar for the next few months, which was obtained through the Freedom of Information Act.
The article claims the calendar refutes previous statements from the city that the chief was unable to meet with the Civilian Review Board due to scheduling conflicts.
“Her calendar shows that she was available for every meeting that was asked for,” Rosia Parker, a member of the CRB, said.
In response, CRB members and community members alike spoke up during City Council's public comment period to call for transparency from the city and the police department.
“We want transparency and obviously we're not getting transparency, we met our quota of what we were asked to do so we'd appreciate if y'all would do y’all’s part because we do need a CRB, because we're tired of going back and forth with the police department,” Parker said.
“We all know that we need to have checks and balances on everyone,” Cherry Henley, who was at the meeting and supports the CRB, said. “Everybody has to be accountable for their actions and if you're wrong, you've gotta be accountable for that and we want to make sure that all people are treated fairly in the city.”
Chief Brackney, who was in attendance Monday night, declined a request to comment, only saying she “wants to stay out of the politics of it all.”
The Civilian Review Board is set to hold its next meeting on Tuesday, May 14.