Police brutality: Cop reinstated before city has completed Alex Landau inquiry
As a result, Nixon, who might have been fired for his actions in the Landau case had he not already have gotten sacked, is back on the job -- and the inquiry into a matter that cost the taxpayers of Denver more than three-quarters-of-a-million-dollars appears to have fallen through the cracks.
Holland sees this as objectionable in the extreme. "There was a reinstatement process going on at the same time we have a very serious, incomplete investigation that bears directly on it," he maintains. "The City agreed in the settlement of Alex's case that the internal affairs investigation regarding the incident would continue to conclusion, and that they would reach findings concerning the involvement of all the officers," including Nixon. "But there have been no findings. And that needs to be addressed."
Did officials see the payment to Landau as concluding the matter? If they did, Holland believes, they shouldn't have.
"I don't think the city people perceived the case was ending with a settlement to make it go away," he allows. "The city specifically agreed that it would complete the internal affairs investigation; they agreed that it was important to do. At the time, both officers had already been terminated, but it was understood that the IAB investigation would be completed in respect to them even in that status."
Eight months have passed since the settlement, and while this delay may not seem overly egregious in and of itself, Holland says "you have to see it in context. The complaint has been pending since January 2009, and the case was filed in January 2011. So it isn't like there was a shortage of time for them to look into such a serious matter."
Holland concludes with a pair of questions: "If we're ever going to clean up this police stuff, don't we need to have some consistency in the handling of these investigations? Doesn't the city have to keep its promises?"
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