Morales Potential Return As Police Chief Delayed Until July 12th
Extension gives parties more time to negotiate settlement.
Ousted Milwaukee Police Chief Alfonso Morales didn’t get his job back Saturday.
The former chief’s legal team, led by Frank Gimbel, mutually agreed with city officials to delay his court-ordered reinstatement until Monday, July 12th. The extension gives both sides time to continue to work on a settlement.
His case has received help multiple times along the way. City Attorney Tearman Spencer, in a filing, agreed that Morales was denied his due process rights. Then in December, Milwaukee County Circuit Court Judge Christopher Foley ruled in Morales’ favor and ordered him reinstated. In May, he set a 45-day timeline for that to happen. That timeline was to allow Morales to return as chief on Saturday, July 3rd, something Gimbel said Morales was prepared to do.
“This disgraceful conduct by the commission has created complete uncertainty and total chaos in this community,” said Foley in June. “I’m forcing the city to obey the law or buy their way out of this because of what they did.”
The exact amount of a settlement Morales is seeking remains unclear, but the former chief did file a claim against the city for $625,000 last August. Morales, now a resident of the Village of Pewaukee, also has a federal suit pending against the city.
Acting chief Jeffrey Norman remains caught in the middle. He was the last local candidate remaining in a national search for a new police chief, but was eliminated when the field was narrowed to three. Two of the three remaining candidates dropped out after the commission cast multiple tie votes in trying to select a new chief.
The acting chief meanwhile continues to pick up support in the community. Members of the Common Council, including President Cavalier Johnson, have openly endorsed Norman, while others have said his time as acting chief should be viewed as an on-the-job interview.
Gimbel did not respond to a request for comment Friday.
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