SEATTLE - In a scathing draft report, the federal monitor overseeing the Seattle Police Department says he is finding "intransigence and an aversion to innovation in some quarters."
The draft report from monitor Merrick Bobb also cites department for the "failure of the SPD to fully and fairly analyze officer-involved shootings."
Bobb was appointed police monitor in the wake of the Department of Justice Consent Decree requiring the department to end abuses.
In reaction, City Council Public Safety Chair Bruce Harrell reacted with frustration. "There almost seems to be an intentional obstructionist kind of attitude in many pockets of the department and this is very disturbing," said Harrell.
Interim Police Chief Jim Pugel won't respond to the specifics in the draft report because it is supposed to be confidential. But he did respond in general about the progress of the reforms. "I have not seen personally resistance to change. And the changes that we've made so far are pretty darn good," Pugel said.
The draft report singles out Pugel for praise, saying that he "merits recognition for open mindedness and responsiveness. "However, the report also says if the current senior command staff remains in place and their attitudes toward the settlement agreement do not change, the SPD is unlikely to be able to achieve full and effective compliance with the consent decree."