Huntsville City Council members want to see action plan for HPD

Updated: Jun. 2, 2021 at 11:39 PM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - After a year of waiting on Huntsville’s Citizens Advisory Council’s review of the department, mainly stemming from last year’s protests, people in the community and some local leaders are growing impatient for action.

Over the past year, there has been a lot of reflection, discussion, and a complete review of protests that took place in downtown Huntsville in June of 2020. That review consisted of 248 pages after a Birmingham firm was brought in to conduct an independent review of police actions for Huntsville’s Citizens Advisory Council.

A long list of recommended actions was also given to the Police Department.

City Councilman, Bill Kling, says there needs to be a deadline on when those recommendations are implemented.

“We just want to roll up our sleeves and see results. I think getting a specific timeline is very important,” said Kling.

Kling also added that he expects to see a report from the City Administrator John Hamilton on putting those recommendations to use in the near future.

In the meantime, days after a controversial video was posted of a 22-year-old man being kicked by an officer while he was getting arrested, WAFF asked Mayor of Huntsville Tommy Battle what action is currently being taken to restore trust.

“It is an internal affairs investigation. They are going through that process and when we get finished we will have findings and when those findings are done we will take action,” said Mayor Battle.

Kling says that trust should come with policy changes.

“We want to come up with a policy that would allow public release of body cam footage once certain legalities have taken place and with the consent of the family members who are affected by this,” said Kling.

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