ACLU Hosts Sunday Forum On Police Complaints

By: WOWT Email
By: WOWT Email

The ACLU of Nebraska plans a Town Hall meeting on police reform this Sunday, but the police chief and mayor are raising questions about the agenda.

According to the ACLU, the Town Hall is in response to “years of complaints from Omaha residents” about police.

A news release quotes Amy Miller, legal director for the ACLU of Nebraska, as saying, “The ACLU of Nebraska has received hundreds of complaints from residents of Omaha in recent years related to the police department. We have identified reforms that have been successfully implemented in other communities to help build community trust in law enforcement and provide for greater oversight and accountability. The Omaha Police Department has indicated some of the reforms we’ve identified are acceptable to them. We look forward to a productive conversation on Sunday with community members and experts."

According to a release from the mayor’s office, Mayor Jean Stothert is quoted as saying, “I am confident in Chief Schmaderer and the actions he has already taken. Three out of the four 'demands' the ACLU has for the Omaha Police Department are either already done or have been studied by OPD for implementation quite some time ago. Any attempt by the ACLU to assert credit for these changes is completely without merit. The Omaha Police Department received full national accreditation on July 2013 and is a professional hard working department. The ACLU did not invite me to participate in the Town Hall or make my office aware of the Sunday meeting.”

The Police Department issued a statement with some similar wording quoting Chief Todd Schmaderer. "I am disappointed in the misleading manner the ACLU has organized the Town Hall meeting on Sunday, March 2nd; as such, I am electing not to attend. Three out of the four 'demands' the ACLU has for the Omaha Police Department are either already done or have been studied by OPD for implementation quite some time ago. Any attempt by the ACLU to assert credit for these changes is completely without merit. The Omaha Police Department received full national accreditation on July 2013 and is a professional hard working department.”

The Town Hall meeting Sunday from 3 - 6 p.m. at the Community Café, Lake Point Center, 2401 Lake Street, is open to the public.


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