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The Atlanta Police Department's LGBT Advisory Group is stepping up to speak on Zone 5 Commander Major Khirus Williams' behalf after it was made public he was being "forced into retirement" for leaking internal information to eliminate community-oriented policing.
According to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Major Williams claims to have been “forced into retirement” after leaking an internal proposal that would have eliminated community-oriented policing. The AJC also reports that Williams was a 26-year veteran of the force and was considered as a possible replacement for Chief Richard Pennington after his retirement in 2010.
A Public Safety Committee meeting is set for today at Atlanta City Hall at 3 p.m. in Committee Room 2.
Members of the LGBT Advisory group to the Atlanta Police Department say they are confused and "insulted" by how long an internal investigation is taking into the unconstitutional raid on the Atlanta Eagle.
The advisory board received a copy of a letter from Chief George Turner to the Atlanta Citizen Review Board saying he was rejecting the CRB's recommendations for punishment of officers involved in the Atlanta Eagle raid. Recommendations ranged from a 30 day suspension of one officer, three-day suspensions for others as well as written reprimands and Fourth Amendment training.
"At this time, the Office of Professional Standards has not concluded its investigation into the allegations surrounding the Eagle file; as further investigative requirements arose as a result of civil litigation that stemmed therefrom," the letter from Turner states. The letter is dated Jan. 25.
The Atlanta Police Department’s LGBT Advisory Group is urging Chief George Turner to accept the Atlanta Citizens Review Board recommendations for punishments of the officers and supervisors involved in the illegal Atlanta Eagle raid.
At its Monday meeting, the advisory board voted to inform the chief as well as the mayor that members “strongly support” the CRB’s recommendations that the officers involved in the raid on Sept. 10, 2009, be punished with three days unpaid leave, a written reprimand and training on the Fourth Amendment. The board also backed the CRB’s recommendations that the supervisors of the raid receive written reprimands and Fourth Amendment training.
Sgt. Kelley Collier, who said during a CRB in-depth investigation that he could virtually not recall anything the night of the raid, was recommended to receive a 30-day suspension without pay for being “untruthful” — an offense that typically ends in an officer being fired.
In an interview with WSB TV, Mayor Kasim Reed spoke out for the first time about the current internal investigation into three Atlanta Police Red Dog Unit officers allegedly pulling over two men and strip searching them in the middle of the road in broad daylight. Two of the accused Red Dog officers were involved in the illegal raid on the Atlanta Eagle, a gay bar in Midtown.
"It is going to be robust and swift. We have a problem," Reed told WSB TV reporter Ryan Young.
The men's allegations are being investigated by the Citizens Review Board as well.
"Now when things when brought to our attention by the CRB we are not going to make excuses, we're going to change," Reed told WSB TV.
Conflicting reports emerged over the weekend about the fate of the Atlanta Police Department's notorious Red Dog Unit, but a police spokesman said this morning that the unit is not being disbanded.
WABE, citing anonymous sources, is reporting the unit may be disbanded as soon as this week. Reporter Jim Burress noted that APD spokesperson Sgt. Curtis Davenport said that was a "rumor."
WSB TV, however, had an exclusive interview with Chief George Turner over the weekend in which Turner told reporter Eric Philips that there were no plans to disband the unit.
Carlos Campos, spokesperson for the APD, said this afternoon, "To the best of my knowledge, [the Red Dog Unit] is not being disbanded today."