Jeramey Jannene

Here Are Chief Morales’ Marching Orders

Read all 11 directives, ranging from a COVID-19 mask policy to attending every commission meeting.

By - Jul 21st, 2020 05:27 pm
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Milwaukee Police Chief Alfonso Morales. Photo from the Milwaukee Police Department.

Milwaukee Police Chief Alfonso Morales. File photo from the Milwaukee Police Department.

The Fire & Police Commission released a written copy of its directives for Milwaukee Police Chief Alfonso Morales on Tuesday afternoon. The directions, which serve as legal orders from the police and fire oversight body, compel Morales to produce a number of documents and reports on specific timelines and provide better communication going forward or face a suspension, reduction in rank or termination.

Executive Director Griselda Aldrete, the commission’s secretary, spent approximately 15 minutes reading the order into the record during a public meeting on Monday evening. But those were almost the only words spoken at the meeting. The commission, led by attorney Steven M. DeVougas, voted unanimously, without any discussion, to adopt the order. The group had met in closed session last week with Morales.

The 11 directives are spelled out over a seven-page document that includes two pages of “whereas” clauses listing why the directives are necessary including a nearly full-page list of requests for which the commission deems Morales provided a “lack of cooperation.”

Morales is being represented by attorney Frank Gimbel, who said the directives are a distraction from issues within the commission. “Much of the information they requested today has already been provided to them,” said Gimbel in a press conference after the meeting. He called the commission’s approach “very aggressive.”

Morales was given a full four-year term as police chief in December 2019 after finishing out the term of retired chief Edward A. Flynn.

The last directive issued by the commission, a procedure rarely used, was to order Flynn to reinstate the police pursuit policy.

For more on the process and Monday’s meeting, see our coverage. The entire directive list is included below. A full copy of the order can be found on Urban Milwaukee.

Directive #1

Be it further resolved, that the Board of the Fire and Police Commission requests authority to obtain department records. Sec. 62.50(1 m) specifies that the Board may inspect any property of the departments, including but not limited to books and records, required for a review under this section. The ‘under this section’ language suggests that the board’s authority here is limited to a policy review. As such, the Board is requesting documents as part of its authority to conduct a policy review on involving the following incidents and/or individuals:

  • That the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners of the City of Milwaukee, does hereby direct Milwaukee Chief of Police Alfonso Morales audit and present findings, including the full investigative file and disciplinary review file, within thirty (30) days from today’s date (July 20, 2020) to the Board regarding the Sterling Brown arrest incident
  • That the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners of the City of Milwaukee, does hereby direct Milwaukee Chief of Police Alfonso Morales to audit the investigation of, release footage to the Executive Director and the Board of the Fire and Police Commission, and provide a full, open, and public explanation the police interaction with Kareem McKinley in 2018, as well as provide the full investigative file and disciplinary review file, to the Fire and Police Commission within seven (7) days from today’s date (July 20, 2020)
  • That the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners of the City of Milwaukee, does hereby direct Milwaukee Chief of Police Alfonso Morales to audit the investigation of, release footage to the Executive Director and the Board of the Fire and Police Commission, and provide a full, open, and public explanation of the September 8, 2019 shooting of Tari Davis, as well as provide the full investigative file and disciplinary review file, to the Fire and Police Commission, within seven (7) days from today’s date (July 20, 2020)
  • That the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners of the City of Milwaukee, does hereby direct Milwaukee Chief of Police Alfonso Morales to audit the investigation of, release footage to the Executive Director and the Board of the Fire and Police Commission, and provide a full, open, and public explanation of the June 29, 2020 arrest of Vaun Mayes, as well as provide the full investigative file and disciplinary review file, to the Fire and Police Commission within 7 days from today’s date (July 20, 2020)
  • That the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners of the City of Milwaukee, does hereby direct Milwaukee Chief of Police Alfonso Morales to perform an audit and present a Standard Operating Procedure regarding the safeguarding of evidence related to sensitive crimes, as well as the privacy of complainants and potential suspects within fifteen (15) days from today’s date (July 20, 2020). Deadline: August 4, 2020
  • That the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners of the City of Milwaukee, does hereby direct Milwaukee Chief of Police Alfonso Morales to promptly provide a full, public, and accurate explanation of the use of teargas and large volumes of oleoresin capsicum spray during peaceful civil disturbances and the situations that warrant those tactics within fifteen (15) days from today’s date (July 20, 2020). Deadline: August 4, 2020. The Chief shall work with the Board of the Fire and Police Commission in amending the proper SOP(s) to discontinue the use of chemicals mentioned above. This will need to be discussed at the next Policies and Standards meeting on July 30, 2020.
  • That the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners of the City of Milwaukee, does hereby direct Milwaukee Chief of Police Alfonso Morales to promptly provide a full explanation and proper documentation of the decision to terminate seven (7) PSSI employees in February of 2019 in a future Fire and Po!ice Commission meeting and trial. This shall be provided in writing to the Executive Director and the Board of the Fire and Police Commission within fifteen (15) days from today’s date (July 20, 2020). Deadline: August 4, 2020
  • That the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners of the City of Milwaukee, does hereby direct Milwaukee Chief of Police Alfonso Morales provide a full update of Department compliance efforts and status as it is relates [sic] to the ACLU Settlement Agreement mandates, also known as the Collins, et al. Settlement Agreement, in response to the upcoming findings of the Year Two report by CJI. This shall be provided in writing to the Executive Director and the Board of the Fire and Police Commission within fifteen (15) days from today’s date (July 20, 2020). Deadline: August 4, 2020

Directive #2 – Community Oriented Policing

Be it resolved that, the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners of the City of Milwaukee, pursuant to Section 62.50 (23) Wis. Stats, does hereby direct Milwaukee Chief of Police Alfonso Morales to prepare and present promptly a draft of a Community Oriented Policing policy and Standard Operating Procedure in collaboration with the CCC, Community Leaders, the Common Council at the next Policies and Standards Committee meeting. Deadline: July 30, 2020

Directive #3 – Discipline Matrix

Be it further resolved, that the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners of the City of Milwaukee, does hereby direct Milwaukee Chief of Police Alfonso Morales to promptly begin collaboration with the Complaints & Disciplines and Policies & Standards Committees to develop and implement a Discipline Matrix to accompany the Code of Conduct and bring clarity to the Discipline Process. Deadline: August 6, 2020

Directive #4 – COVID-19 Compliance, Mitigation Plan and Updates

Be it further resolved, that the Board of the Fire and Police Commissioners of the City of Milwaukee, does hereby direct Milwaukee Chief of Police Alfonso Morales to implement the city-wide Face Covering Requirement Policy (effective July 16, 2020) for general City employees, which include all Milwaukee Police Department employees; sworn and civilian; effective immediately. An official policy (not just roll call) shall be developed with implemented protocols and/or guidelines to ensure compliance with the Milwaukee face coverings ordinance. The policy shall be presented to the Policies and Standards Committee on July 30, 2020 by the Chief of Police.

Directive #5 – Re-appointment Contingency Update

Be it further resolved, that the Board of Fire and Police Commission of the City of Milwaukee, does hereby direct Milwaukee Chief of Police Alfonso Morales to promptly provide a full update of compliance with the terms of re-appointment outlined by a motion approved by the Board of the Fire and Police Commission on December 18, 2019 as the following:

The Board of the Fire and Police Commission approved this performance matrix for reappointment on 12/18/2019:

  • Evaluation of Police Chief every six months to include the following reports:
    • MPD statistics on crime data and arrest data;
    • How MPD is integrating community policing into their policies;
    • MPD’s pursuit policy and how they use technology to avoid the complaints that were voiced in the meeting;
    • Reckless driving efforts that the MPD has in place;
    • 9-1-1 Center and the stats related to turnover and response rates;
    • CAD/technology updates;
    • Officer deployment initiatives regarding dispatching, prevention and Differential Police Response;
    • Keep the board updated on retirements and the plan to replace staff;
    • Address issues with policies that have been implemented and report if they are working, not working and why they are not working;
    • Management of overtime by the Milwaukee Police Department;
  • The Chief of Police is also being asked to do the following:
    • Work with the Commissioners as they are an oversight board;
    • Be accessible to the Commissioners through an open door policy;
    • Work with the community to include supporters and opponents;
    • Be transparent while working with the board

This shall be provided in writing to the Executive Director and the Board of the Fire and Police Commission within fifteen (15) days from today’s date (July 20, 2020). Deadline: August 4, 2020

Directive #6 – Promotional Policies

Be it further resolved, that the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners of the City of Milwaukee, does hereby direct Milwaukee Chief of Police Alfonso Morales to promptly provide a full explanation of the methodology, process, all candidate information and interview records for vetting and approving candidates for promotion in the ranks of Assistant Chief, Captain, Lieutenant and Emergency Communications Manager positions. An updated Milwaukee Police Department organizational structure shall also be amended and provided to include names of individuals currently in these ranks; to include permanent, acting, administrative positions. This shall be provided in writing to the Executive Director and the Board of the Fire and Police Commission within fifteen (15) days from today’s date (July 20, 2020). Deadline: August 4, 2020

Directive #7 – Responsiveness

Be it further resolved, that the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners of the City of Milwaukee, does hereby direct Milwaukee Chief of Police Alfonso Morales and related command staff to comply with ALL requests of the Fire and Police Commission within seven (7) days of receipt or in accordance with the deadline set by the Executive Director and/or the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners. An amendment will be made to SOP 265-Open Records at the next Policies and Standards meeting on July 30, 2020 to make this a policy on SOP 265

Directive #8 – Open Records

Be it further resolved, that the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners of the City of Milwaukee, does hereby direct Milwaukee Chief of Police Alfonso Morales to order that the Department immediately institute a policy to comply with any and all open records requests made by Fire and Police Commission Investigators, the Executive Director, or members of the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners under all circumstances and regardless of open/active or closed status of investigations pursuant to the presumption of a right to examine records as outlined in SOP 265- Open Records and Sec. 19.35 Wis. Stats. An amendment will be made to SOP 265- Open Records at the next Policies and Standards meeting on July 30, 2020 to make this a policy on SOP 265

Directive #9 – Attendance of the Chief

Be it further resolved, that the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners of the City of Milwaukee, does hereby direct Milwaukee Chief of Police Alfonso Morales to immediately appear, virtually or in-person, at ALL regular and committee meetings held by the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners, unless unavailable. In the event of unavailability, notice and justification shall be communicated to the Executive Director and/or the Board of the Fire and Police Commission, in writing, no less than 24-hours before the scheduled start of the meeting. This notice shall include the name of a designated representative who will be appearing and why

Directive #10 – Open Communication

Be it further resolved, that the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners of the City of Milwaukee, does hereby direct Milwaukee Chief of Police Alfonso Morales and related command staff shall immediately begin to copy the office of the Executive Director on any and all communications to the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners to ensure transparency, accountability, and adequate information sharing

Directive #11 – Immediate Status Briefing

Be it further resolved, that the Chief of Police, specifically, as the head of the Department, shall immediately provide written updates on MPD compliance with these directives at the next meeting of the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners on August 6, 2020 and shall be prepared to respond to related questions from the Board members

Failure to Comply

Be it further resolved, that failure to comply, fully and promptly, with these directives shall result in disciplinary action by the Board, including discharge, suspension, or reduction in rank, pursuant to Sec. 62.50 Wis. Stats.

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More about the Fire & Police Commission's Troubles

Read more about Fire & Police Commission's Troubles here

Categories: Public Safety

2 thoughts on “Here Are Chief Morales’ Marching Orders”

  1. Ryan Cotic says:

    It seems racist for them to be so rude to him potentially because he is mexican american? Why the disrespect for what seems like a good chief?

  2. GRSJAP says:

    Should have been done a long time ago, and should be standard operating procedure for any chief.

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