Crime Group Reporting to MPD, Despite Public Absence

Crime Group Reporting to MPD, Despite Public Absence

Members of one of Memphis Mayor A C Wharton's most important committees haven't been seen or heard from in public for more than six months.
MEMPHIS, TN (localmemphis.com) - Members of one of Memphis Mayor A C Wharton's most important committees haven't been seen or heard from in public for more than six months.

Late last year the mayor created a Citizen's Crime Commission. A local reverend and two retired police officers were supposed to make recommendations about how the city can try to weed out bad officers before they get into trouble.

According to Memphis City Councilman Jim Strickland, "The committee's been communicating with who they should, the police department."

Strickland says he's spoken with the head of the commission, Reverend Keith Norman, recently. He was surprised and pleased with what he heard.

"He went over a laundry list of things they've done. They've been meeting on a regular basis for many hours per week and they're going to come to the council in August and give us an update."

The whole idea of a committee came after a bad year for Memphis police officers. One cop is charged with causing a wreck where two people were killed. Another admits killing a teenage boy. Some are charged with rape, some with assault; it became a serious problem, not to mention a public relations nightmare for the city.

The committee had its work cut out for them, and their goal was clear.

"How the police department could improve," said Strickland. "They've been in constant contact with the police department, the police director Toney Armstrong and things that they can do better. Training police officers and they way they can operate the office better."

The recommended changes in training couldn't even begin until next year at the earliest. The department wasn't given enough money to hire new officers this year.
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