Jeramey Jannene
City Hall

Judge Orders Alfonso Morales Gets His Job Back in 45 Days

Former police chief gets even more leverage on potential settlement.

By - May 19th, 2021 10:53 am
Police Chief Alfonso Morales speaks at a press conference on the DNC. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

Police Chief Alfonso Morales speaks at a press conference. File photo by Jeramey Jannene.

There is now a tight timeline for the City of Milwaukee to settle with ousted police chief Alfonso Morales.

Milwaukee County Circuit Court Judge Christopher Foley ruled Wednesday morning that if no settlement is reached within 45 days the former chief will get his job back.

Morales was demoted by the Fire & Police Commission in August before the deadline expired on all 11 directives the commission issued in July. He elected to retire and sued the city.

City Attorney Tearman Spencer, the commission’s attorney, admitted to the court that Morales was denied his due process rights. The filing asked for the case to be sent back for Morales to be subject to a disciplinary trial before the commission.

But Foley, in December, ruled in Morales’ favor and ordered him to be reinstated to his position.

Morales’ legal team, led by Attorney Frank Gimbel, has argued that the city has been delaying a settlement. In April they asked for the chief to be fully reinstated.

Spencer has been embroiled in controversy since the suit was filed and his office has seen a wave of resignations. That includes assistant city attorney William Davidson who was working on the Morales case. He filed to withdraw from the case earlier this month. The city is now represented by outside counsel, Nathaniel Cade of the Cade Law Group.

Jeffrey Norman is currently serving as acting police chief after a formal search process for a new chief was paused and acting chief Michael Brunson retired.

Since demoting Morales, two of the seven members of the Fire & Police Commission resigned as well as the executive director. And the council voted not to reappoint another FPC member, a largely symbolic action.

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