Joint committee recommends three for inquiry

Mayor, Council President to make final selection

Brian Coddington, Communications Director, 509.625.6740

Wednesday, December 23, 2015 at 2:21 p.m.

A joint committee that is coordinating an independent inquiry into recent personnel matters has forwarded the names of three potential investigators to Mayor David Condon and Council President Ben Stuckart for consideration.

The joint committee of Councilmember Karen Stratton, City Council attorney Brian McClatchey, private attorney Laura McAloon and City Utility Director Rick Romero recommended that the investigator be chosen from among the following individuals:

  • Kris Cappel, a principal in Seattle investigation consulting firm the Seabold Group and former federal prosecutor, who has experience in employment law investigations.
  • Janice Corbin, a human resources training and consultant with the Mukilteo, Wash. firm Sound Employment Solutions, LLC, and former assistant chief with the Seattle Police Department, who has 30 years of human resources experience.
  • Robert Westinghouse, a lawyer with Seattle law firm Yarmuth Wilsdon, PLLC and a former federal prosecutor who has experience with complex cases.

Condon and Stuckart will use information gathered from the conversations to select an evaluator to conduct an independent inquiry into the process, policy, and timelines associated with recent Spokane Police Division personnel movement and release of public records. The inquiry will also include an evaluation of the processes for all employee complaints and investigations.

Committee members interviewed six candidates, which included three recommended by the U.S. Attorney’s Office and three added by the committee. A candidate could be approved by the City Council at its next regularly scheduled meeting on Jan. 4.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office recommended the names of four individuals to the joint committee, one of whom withdrew from consideration due to a conflict of interest. Committee members added three additional candidates.

The joint committee is also working to finalize the scope of the work, which will focus on the process, policy, and timelines as requested in the City Council letter on Nov. 30. Complaints filed with the citizen Ethics Commission will be handled through the normal process.

Any further communication will come from the joint committee.