CLERB won’t accept Director Rallings’ letters

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- The Civilian Law Enforcement Review, also known as CLERB, board met Thursday after Memphis Police Director Michael Rallings shrugged off the board's recommendations on several misconduct complaints about his officers.

CLERB recently asked Rallings to overturn internal affairs rulings in four cases and suggested he look at disciplining the officers, change police or require sensitivity training. He refused to do that.

CLERB voted to send another recommendation back to Rallings reiterating evidence and asking him to look at the four cases again.

The board reviews police misconduct complaints form the public and makes recommendations to the police director, but he isn't required to take their advice.

"We're not trying to boss him, tell him how to do his job, but we want him to listen and look at what we presented to him," said CLERB chairman Ralph White.

Rallings rejected three cases and asked for more video evidence in Paul Garner's case. Garner was arrested in 2013 for recording officers arresting someone. The charges were dropped.

"It's revealing as to what this director's position on police accountability and oversight is," said Garner.

CLERB was reinstated last year. These were the first cases Ralligns has looked at. It begs the question did its reinstatement really do anything?

Garner still believe it does.

"I think CLERB has had the effect of making the director have to be public on his position," he said.

CLERB said it will re-send recommendations to Rallings soon. It's unclear if he has to send a response back.

CLERB also voted to look at getting a new council liaison. They said their current liaison, Councilman Worth Morgan, hasn't shown up to the past nine meetings.


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