Metro police chief addresses 'perceived bias' in investigation - WSMV News 4

Metro police chief addresses 'perceived bias' in investigation

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Metro Police Chief Steve Anderson (Source: Metro Police) Metro Police Chief Steve Anderson (Source: Metro Police)

Metro Police Chief Steve Anderson reacted to the district attorney’s concerns that the internal reports into the fatal shooting of Jocques Clemmons by a police officer may have been biased based on its wording.

Anderson said he doesn’t see any bias in the investigation.

He said he agrees with District Attorney General Glenn Funk’s decision not to press charges, but Anderson said he has his own decision to make.

Funk mentioned and then had his assistant district attorneys speak to four observations that could possibly affect public perception and give the appearance of bias.

“Identifying the officer as the victim and Clemmons as the suspect sends a message that could be perceived as biased. And it seems insensitive because no charges could be filed against Mr. Clemmons to label the parties in this matter, particularly this early, could create the appearance to the public that the investigation is biased,” said Assistant District Attorney Amy Hunter.

“When an investigative agency investigates itself, witnesses may be distrusting of the process, and the same witnesses may not want to come forward or disclose all facts,” said Assistant District Attorney Marcus Floyd.

The police chief has to decide whether Officer Joshua Lippert’s actions followed policy.

Anderson said he won’t say whether Lippert should be disciplined until after he looks at everything.

“I don’t think exonerated is the word to use in what General Funk said,” Anderson said. “The Office of Professional Accountability has completed their report, but keep in mind those are recommendations … to be viewed by the board.

“So just because one body has looked at it and concluded that there was no policy violation, the use of force board will dig deeper,” Anderson added.

Anderson said he will not read the Office of Professional Accountability’s internal affairs report that was released until after he gets the report from the use of force board. He said he will look at everything all at once.

The use of force board meets later this month.

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