News
News Home
Quick Bites
Exploradio
News Archive
News Channel
Special Features
NPR
nowplaying
On AirNewsClassical
Loading...
  
School Closings
WKSU Support
Funding for WKSU is made possible in part through support from the following businesses and organizations.

Northeast Ohio Medical University

Greater Akron Chamber

Akron Children's Hospital


For more information on how your company or organization can support WKSU, download the WKSU Media Kit.

(WKSU Media Kit PDF icon )


Donate Your Vehicle to WKSU

Programs Schedule Make A Pledge Member BenefitsFAQ/HelpContact Us
Courts and Crime


Cleveland deadly chase report: A third of officers broke protocol
But the internal review says most of the more than 100 officers and supervisors acted correctly in the mass chase and shooting
by WKSU's KEVIN NIEDERMIER


Reporter
Kevin Niedermier
 
Cleveland Police Commander James Chura led the city's internal investigation. He concluded most officers acted correctly.
Courtesy of Kevin Niedermier
Download (WKSU Only)
In The Region:

The City of Cleveland has completed its internal review of last November's controversial police chase and fatal shooting of two suspects. The review shows most of the nearly 100 officers and 15 supervisors involved did their jobs that night, but some violated department policies. Now, Police Chief Michael McGrath will review the report and decide if any of those officers will be suspended or fired.

Click to listen

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (3:22)


The city’s administrative review of the more than 20-minute pursuit focused only on the chase. Possible criminal charges in the fatal shooting of Timothy Russell and Malissa Williams in a barrage of nearly 140 bullets are being considered separately by the Cuyahoga County prosecutor.

Both investigations are built around an extensive report by the Ohio Attorney General’s office. That report called the incident a “systemic failure of the police department," and said there is no evidence the suspects had a gun as police believed.

The city’s administrative review included interviews with more than 100 officers. It was led by Police Commander James Chura of the department’s special investigation unit.  During the presentation, he spent more than an hour detailing the pursuit.  His report used maps showing were the suspects and police cruisers were every second of the chase. He also used surveillance and police dash cam videos from along nearly 20-mile route. And he played recordings of police radio transmissions.

Radio transmissions show some officers not in compliance
“At 47-43 south on East 71st: (police radio transmission) The suspect has a red pop can in his hand, be advised.”

In this radio exchange, a pursuing officer relays what he’s observing to a dispatcher who broadcasts the information to everyone in the chase. Chura says this complies with department policies.

But other transmissions show officers failing to end their pursuits after being ordered to by supervisors, or not relaying important information to dispatchers and other officers. In one instance, an officer is heard saying that the suspect’s car is backfiring, but he doesn’t relay that information to a dispatcher. That was important because many officers believed the suspects were shooting at them.

In other cases, one officer was driving at more than 120 miles per hour, which could be a violation of the department’s policy of keeping public safety in mind when in a pursuit. Cleveland Police Chief Michael McGrath says he feels terrible about the violations, but praised the majority of officers involved who he said followed the rules in a stressful situation. He says the officers who may have violated the rules should have known better.

Chief says all officers should know the rules
“They were trained; we have the policies in place. And all through their careers with the department, they’re instructed to check with their supervisors if they have questions about department policies.”

McGrath expects his review of the report to take a couple of weeks. Cleveland Police Patrolmen’s Association President Jeff Follmer says the review doesn’t provide any new information, and he stands by the officers involved.

Police union president stands by officers
“We knew there were some violations. Our officers think of (other) officers' safety.
During the heat of the moment with the adrenaline going, they’re thinking more about their fellow officers who’ve heard shots fired. We’ve had suspects come out of cars during traffic stops and chases with guns.”

Follmer says the chase never would have started if the suspects had not fled after being stopped by police.

(Click image for larger view.)

Add Your Comment
Name:

Location:

E-mail: (not published, only used to contact you about your comment)


Comments:




 
Page Options

Print this page

E-Mail this page / Send mp3

Share on Facebook




Stories with Recent Comments

An amendment to an Ohio agriculture bill may kill whole bill
I hope the Gov. sticks to his veto, Att takes more out of this state than it puts in.

From warehouse to writer: Terry Pluto's Thanksgiving thank you
Dear Terry: On my 8th cup of coffee trying to get Thanksgiving "Brunch" done ahead of time because I work nights. However, I just had to stop to contact yo...

The first big private gift comes in for the pro football HOF project
The HOF has needed a shot in the arm for many years and this project will go a long way to getting the attraction the attention it deserves (next: upgrad...

Environmental study nears completion in East Liverpool
Twenty years ago my twin sister and I protested the building and operation of the WTI facility citing several studies that indicated the risk of cancer due to ...

HOF's Canton expansion could take an island and make it a village
I live in the block from Broad St to the Hall of Fame and will be impacted by the expansion. I am in the process of selling my home and planned to long before i...

Cleveland redeploys police to replace rejected red-light traffic cameras
Periodic rotational enforcement without warning does NOT change behavior and the city officials know that. This is the basis of all officer-run enforcement trap...

New enrollment period offers more insurance options
The removal of federal funding for healthcare CO-OPs may limit the growth of the CO-OP movement. http://www.healthcaretownhall.com/?p=6381

The family of Boardman vet killed in Vietnam receives his medals
My name is Mike Eisenbraun. I am Larry's brother. I was 14 years old when Larry was killed in Vietnam. He has been gone for 46 years but it seems like yester...

Cleveland seniors are creating new wealth -- and facing new challenges
Why is anyone surprised that we people over 65 are not retiring? If you have been paying attention, defined company funded pensions were phasing out in the eigh...

Copyright © 2014 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.

 
In Partnership With:

NPR PRI Kent State University

listen in windows media format listen in realplayer format Car Talk Hosts: Tom & Ray Magliozzi Fresh Air Host: Terry Gross A Service of Kent State University 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. NPR Senior Correspondent: Noah Adams Living on Earth Host: Steve Curwood 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. A Service of Kent State University