The Community Oversight Board (COB) approved a report issuing use of force consent decree recommendations. Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD) will work with the COB to implement these recommendations.
Mayor John Cooper tasked members within the Community Oversight Board to explore use of force policies following the deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor.
Cooper acted in response to President Barack Obama’s Reimagining Policing Pledge to review and reform use of force policies that reflect the “systemic racism within law enforcement.”
The board issued seven recommendations for MNPD. Other states’ use of force consent decrees informed the COB’s report.
The COB asked that MNPD make changes to its current infrastructure. Recommendations included a comprehensive review of the consistency between policy and training, more training on conducting use of force investigations, and a three-tiered classification system for all use of force above handcuffing.
The board also desired that the demographics relating to race, ethnicity, sex, location, and age for different uses of force be collected and stored in an interactive dashboard updated monthly or quarterly.
The COB requested for MNPD to create two new teams specifically for mental health-related calls and a use of force investigations.
In 2018, voters approved a referendum to create the COB. The intent of the board was to provide oversight for MNPD.
As The Tennessee Star reported previously, the Nashville Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) didn’t support creation of the COB. Nashville’s previous mayor, David Briley, expressed concern over the costliness and politicization that the COB could incur.
Prior to the COB, individuals could file complaints with an officer’s supervisor, the district or U.S. attorney’s office, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, or even the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
A previous policy report presented this past spring asked that MNPD cease asking individuals about their immigration and citizenship status. Following the Floyd riots, the COB issued another policy report to ban chokeholds and strangleholds, require de-escalation, and ban shooting at moving vehicles.
The COB told The Star that its leadership wouldn’t be available for comment prior to press time.
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