Thursday, January 19, 2017

Inspector General Confirms IPRA Misconduct First Revealed By Blue Voice

In a story that was first covered by a candidate on the FOP’s Blue Voice slate, a new report states that the city agency overseeing complaints of police misconduct has itself engaged in wrongdoing in a high-profile case against Chicago Police Commander Glenn Evans.   

The city’s Inspector General (IG) cites evidence that an investigator at the Independent Police Review Authority (IPRA) wrongfully released information of an investigation against Chicago Police Commander Glenn Evans.

The Sun Times:

The report states that an IG investigation had “established” that a former IPRA investigator “emailed, without authorization, a confidential IPRA memorandum regarding an investigation of a high-ranking Chicago Police Department employee to an individual who did not work for the city and had no connection to the confidential investigation.”

The same investigator also “improperly emailed a confidential lab report regarding DNA testing” tied to that same investigation “from the employee’s official IPRA email account to a personal, unsecured email account…”

The report does not identify the police official under investigation. But City Hall sources identified the target of the investigation as Lt. Glenn Evans.
Chicago Police Commander Glenn Evans
Candidate for the second Vice President, Martin Preib, first broke the story that allegations against Chicago Police Commander Glenn Evans in 2014 may be the product of a suspicious relationship between investigators at IPRA and the media.

Evans’ attorneys argued that IPRA had released confidential information against him in an attempt to malign Evans, a highly respected police commander. His legal team also argued that WBEZ reporter Chip Mitchell mischaracterized the significance of the DNA report. Evans’ team argued that the tests results were not indicative of his guilt, as WBEZ suggested in several high-profile articles. The judge in his criminal trial agreed that the DNA evidence did not prove anything criminal against Evans.

Evans was acquitted on all charges and has since filed a federal lawsuit against IPRA.

The story was first covered in Martin Preib’s Crooked City blog article, Anatomy of a Media Frame-up.

Many questions remain: Is this the sole case of misconduct at IPRA, or is there a pattern? If IPRA was engaged in such suspicious conduct against a commander, what kind of investigations is IPRA running against lesser ranks like patrolmen or detective?

President Dean Angelo and his administration, though confronted by Preib at general membership meetings about the signs of wrongdoing at IPRA, made little, if any, effort to ferret out such evidence, even though officers are being stripped at a record pace, often at the recommendation of IPRA.

Angelo’s refusal to take up this evidence of misconduct is one reason why Preib decided to run with presidential candidate Kevin Graham, and why they decided to name their slate the Blue Voice, as they have argued that the Angelo administration has not spoken up for members.

Second Vice President candidate Martin Preib confronts WBEZ reporter Chip Mitchell.