City Hall

Extra Jolt: McGinn Renominates Head of Police-Oversight Office

By Erica C. Barnett August 28, 2012

Mayor Mike McGinn has renominated Kathryn Olson as head of the city's Office of Professional Accountability. Olson, as we reported last Tuesday, has been in a kind of administrative limbo since May 2010, when her initial three-year appointment, by former mayor Mike McGinn, expired.

McGinn chalked up his indecision on Olson's appointment to the fact that the Seattle Police Department has been under investigation for excessive use of force by the US Department of Justice (last week, a US District Judge approved an agreement between the US Department of Justice and SPD giving the feds more control over how the department operates). However, Olson's reappointment has been on hold since May 2010 long before the DOJ started investigating the department's use-of-force policies.

McGinn also announced that he was hiring a new staffer, Connie Rice, to advise him on police reform. Rice worked for nine years in the Los Angeles office of the NAACP.

The city council will have to confirm Olson's appointment, which would run through 2013; the head of OPA is limited to three three-year terms.
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