by Norm Partin
Based on a report from WTVF, a member of the Community Oversight Board (COB) inserted herself in an active police matter last October. The board member, Brenda Ross, asked questions while the officer was conducting her duty.
COB member Ross had no authority or right to insert herself in an active police matter. In addition, Ross placed her hand on the shoulder of the officer while asking the questions.
Never approach an officer while engaged in an investigation. Never put a hand on an officer other than a handshake. Things I learned as a child. This is basic respect for law enforcement
This incident, as harmless as it seems, is the reason every police department resents a COB. The board is an “oversight” not “on-site” board. Nashville has made a huge mistake by forming this board. The Metro Police Department has many levels of review in place. This includes a DA that has accused a police officer of murder.
Until proven otherwise, this is a board with an agenda. Ross would not have interfered without an agenda or motive. Time for her to go.
The COB is a reaction to unrest not an action to improve anything. Ross was wrong and should be dismissed immediately. She inserted herself into a matter that was none of her business.
The result is further distrust from the police. This is the “I told you so” moment for the police. Ross exceeded her responsibility and abused her authority. That type of abuse will get a police officer suspended or fired.
The actions of Ross delayed the investigation and might have delayed response to the next call. Nothing good comes from what happened. This was no small mistake; this justifies why a COB is a useless waste of time and energy for Nashville.
Officers are leaving Metro for other cities. The exit door just opened wider.
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Norm Partin has had a distinguished career as a host of talk radio programs that focused on NASCAR and is currently the owner of Partin and Associates.
Photo “Brenda Ross” by Brenda Ross. Background Photo “Nashville City Hall” by Nicolas Henderson. CC BY 2.0.