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Courts and Crime

Cleveland hopes to appeal arbitrator's reinstatement of chase supervisors
Union president says the rulings are fair give how other discipline is handled

Web Editor
M.L. Schultze
Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Tim McGinty announced indictments in the shootings a year after Cleveland disciplined other officers in the chase.
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The city of Cleveland plans to appeal an arbitrator’s ruling reinstating three supervisors involved in a massive police chance 18 months ago. WKSU’s M.L. Schultze notes the ruling came the day before five other supervisors are due in court on criminal charges.

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The city fired Sgt. Michael Donegan and demoted Capt. Ulrich Zouhar and Lt. Paul Wilson a year ago for their roles in the chase that ended with two unarmed people dead.

The arbitrator ruled yesterday the discipine was too much, ordering Donegan back on the force immediately as a patrol officer, then after a year, as a sergeant. He’ll get back pay. The other two get their old ranks back, but without back pay.

The Fraternal Order of Police represented the officers. President Brian Betley says he’s disappointed the city wants to appeal. He also says all the officers are marked for life. 

“We still have five supervisors that are going for an arraignment on dereliction of duty charges with this whole incident. So it’s like a never ending nightmare here. We still have a lot of work that we still have to do with this whole case and its 18 months later and here we still are.”

The five supervisors are among the six officers charged criminally with the shooting that came at the end of the chase. The sixth officer , Michael Brelo, is facing voluntary manslaughter charges accused of opening fire from the hood of the car driven by Timothy Russell and Malissa Williams, killing both. 

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