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Accusations fly ahead of Davenport Police Reform meeting

The meeting is being conducted by the Davenport Civil Rights Commission
Published: Jul. 31, 2020 at 11:10 PM CDT
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DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC) - As the Davenport Civil Rights Commission gears up for their meeting on police reform Saturday, controversy surrounds the event after remarks were made between Civil Rights Commission members and the Davenport Police Union.

Civil Rights Commissioner Rabbi Henry Karp said earlier this week “There is a culture among some Davenport police officers who simply don’t treat people of color with the same dignity they treat white people.” Davenport Police Union Chairman Mike Greenleaf refuted the statement.

“If you’re going to come out in public and make that statement, you should have facts to back it up, and you should be ready to release those facts when you make that statement,” said Greenleaf.

Karp’s statement comes as Civil Rights Commission Director Latrice Lacey has put together a report based on interviews from the public about their interactions with Davenport police.

Davenport Civil Rights Chairperson Janelle Swanberg hopes things can be smoother going forward.

“Whatever has happened, I think we need to concentrate on a better way forward, we can work together to find a safer way forward, a fairer way forward, that’s what we want to do,” said Swanberg.

Both said they are ready to work together.

“We would love to be involved in their process at some point, I mean I understand why they don’t initially want us in there, but we have an open mind, we’re always ready to sit down and listen,” Greenleaf said.

“I think our local police department has done good work and have been working on these issues for a long time as many police departments have,” Swanberg said. “Our ultimate goal is to make Davenport a safer, fairer, community, for all our community members, for our police force.”

The meeting is scheduled for Saturday, August 1 at Davenport City Hall at 10 a.m. Those who are unable to attend in-person can attend via zoom: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZEqfuypqjwoHtL5wHXXX5tQbmb9Mvy1SV7W

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