Background And SWOT Analysis
2020 was a year like no other, and tested all of us like never before. Few took the brunt of that more directly than our front-line workers, including our health care workers and yes, our public safety forces.
Policing is difficult, demanding, and essential under the best of circumstances. In 2020 our Division faced on-the-job tragedies, intense criticism and scrutiny, historic calls for change, and sweeping reform in how we serve this community. But 2020 was also a year of progress in areas including recruitment, training, diversity and inclusion, community engagement and independent investigations.
75% of the Community Safety Advisory Commission recommendations, and nearly 85% of the independent Matrix report recommendations are either completed, in progress, or approved pending funding or changes in the union contract.
To ensure accountability and public trust, Public Safety implemented an outside investigation process for citizen complaints related to police protest response.
These reviews were responsive to the public’s demand for independent investigation and accountability, and led to identification of gaps in the division that were addressed through changes in policy/practice. Voters approved the first-ever Columbus Police Civilian Review Board, along with an independent Inspector General to investigate allegations of police misconduct.
Innovative and robust recruiting efforts resulted in the most diverse recruit classes in decades. The December 2020 Recruit Class boasted 47% diversity. The summer 2020 applicant pool reached 49% diversity. The Police Cadet Program established in 2019 is already producing strong results. CPD’s second cadet class has 71% diversity, with three cadets making the 134th Recruit Class.
Police and Fire implemented Emergency Management and Incident Command Systems to ensure their vital 24/7 services to the public throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. For first responders without the luxury of working from home or social distancing, maintaining the safety of personnel and the public required extensive changes including decontamination, quarantining of personnel, revisions of policies regarding non-violent crime, and developing special staffing contingencies.
We expanded the use of ShotSpotter gunshot detection technology as a tool in the fight against gun violence, expanding the three current locations (Linden, Southside and Hilltop) by one square mile each, and the installation of a fourth location on the East side.
The City partnered with the National Network for Safe Communities and Criminologist David M. Kennedy at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice. NNSC’s Gun Violence Intervention maps out who is driving serious violence in Columbus, and concentrates on those at highest risk for violent victimization and reoffending. Kennedy is among the nation’s most respected experts in the field of modern policing.
Through every challenge they faced in 2020, the women and men of CPD stayed focused on the mission of protecting and serving our great city. Along with fighting crime, they built relationships and gave back. In partnership with the Starfish Assignment, our officers provided hundreds of kids with bicycles, served countless meals to our neighbors in need, and reinforced the humanity behind the badge.
We moved into the new year with a renewed focus on our core values: Respect. Excellence. Integrity. Compassion. Accountability.
Director’s MessageDirector’s Message
Ned Pettus Jr., PhD. Director of Public Safety
Ned Pettus, Jr. PhD. Director of Public Safety
A once-in-a-century pandemic coupled with historic community engagement on policing provided the backdrop for 2020. Across the country and here at home, first responders were at the forefront during this unprecedented year. Despite the very real dangers of COVID-19, the Division of Police adapted in real time to continuously evolving virus safety protocols while simultaneously addressing passionate sentiments on policing and how we serve our community. These efforts encouraged new community-police relationships that will fundamentally reshape policing in our city. To be sure, the events of 2020 will have a permanent and irreversible impact on the policing profession.
When I assumed the office of the Chief of Police officially on February 9, 2020, the theme of my remarks was “We’ve only just begun.” I expressed a sincere vision for creating transformational change and noted that we’ve only just begun to nurture enduring relationships with our community.
By March 14, the Division implemented a large-scale response plan to address the pandemic which fundamentally changed how the Division responded to calls for service and interacted with the public. Although the delivery method of some services were necessarily altered, the level of public service was not diminished. Over the course of the year many members of the Division of Police were affected personally by COVID-19 and some tragically lost family members. Officers are used to the inherent risks associated with policing, but a new dynamic in 2020 was the very real possibility of officers bringing danger home to their families in the form of a deadly virus. And yet officers persevered and continued to engage in the important work of providing public safety and serving their community.
The early morning of May 28 began with the shooting of an In/Tac officer while serving a search warrant. The officer fortunately survived his near-fatal injuries. Later that same day, protests erupted in Columbus and around the country in response to the death of George Floyd caused by a Minneapolis police officer. His tragic death was the impetus for outrage and in the days and weeks that followed, protests ensued. Unfortunately at times, these protests became destructive and violent riots that jeopardized the safety of the public and the peaceful protestors. This demanded a swift response by public safety forces. A curfew was implemented in the city and the Governor sent the National Guard to assist – a first in my 31 years of service with the city. Columbus, as most major cities, also saw crimes surge in the second half of 2020. After-action investigations of protests and riots, lawsuits and injunctions, legislative actions, a presidential election cycle, and two high-profile officer-involved shootings resulting in the deaths of two men in Columbus continued to impact an already arduous year.
In 2020, protests exposed a fractured police-community relationship and the Division was challenged by demands for reforms that would drive how the community and the police co-exist. Police and elected officials continued to work to adjust to these evolving demands. Of the 219 recommendations made by the Community Safety Advisory Commission and the independent Matrix report, approximately 206 were either completed, approved and in-process, or are currently awaiting funding. These recommendations, designed around the 6 pillars of 21st century policing, have been significantly implemented despite the challenges 2020 presented. Our recruit classes, some of the most diverse ever hired, graduated on-time thanks to policy revisions and staffing contingencies that limited the detrimental impact of COVID-19. The Division also worked toward earning our 8th Accreditation with by CALEA and continued certification by the Ohio Collaborative.
Policing must confront clear and present danger to public safety while meeting community expectations for transparency and accountability. As a step forward, voters approved a first-ever Civilian Review Board and Inspector General to investigate allegations of police misconduct. The Division turned over investigations of officer-involved deadly force encounters to BCI state investigators. A Chief ’s advisory panel of community members was implemented to work on reconciling evolving policies with community expectations. A special response team was also created to deploy to the scene of First Amendment activities. During a tumultuous 2020, “We’ve only just begun” evolved far past what I originally envisioned. Nevertheless, the women and men of the Division of Police remained remarkably focused and dedicated to the mission. To all personnel of the Division, your tenacity has ensured that the important work of public safety remains paramount. I salute you.
Thomas Quinlan Chief of Police
Chief’s MessageChief’s Message
Thomas Quinlan Chief of Police
Mr. Jeff Furbee Legal Advisor
Lieutenant Mark Denner
Lieutenant Howard Pettengill
Organizational Accountability Aide
Lieutenant Daniel Hargus
Sergeant Daniel Weaver
Public Corruption Task Force
Sergeant James Fuqua
Public Information Unit
Lieutenant Larry Yates
Sergeant Dianne Yandrich Executive Officer
Lieutenant Timothy Myers
Officer Julie Becker
Public Corruption Task Force
Thomas Quinlan Chief of Police
Office of the Chief of PoliceOffice of the Chief of Police
Commander Mark Gardner Internal Affairs
Deputy Chief Michael A. Woods Patrol Operations Subdivison
Commander Mark Lang Training
Deputy Chief Kenneth J. Kuebler Special Operations Subdivision
Commander Nicholas Konves
Commander Robert Meader
Commander Terry Moore
Commander Robert Strausbaugh
Commander Kelly Weiner
Deputy Chief Timothy A. Becker Criminal Investigations Subdivision
Commander Michael Gray
Commander David Hughes
Commander Robert Sagle
Deputy Chief Richard A. Bash Public Accountability Subdivision
Commander Scott Hyland
Manager Susan Deskins
Manager Angela Farrington Crime Laboratory
Commander Alexander Behnen
Deputy Chief Jennifer Knight Community Services Subdivision
Commander David Griffith Professional
Manager Mitchell Clay
Manager Amy Van Pelt
Commander Joseph Echenrode Drug Enforcement
Commander Dennis Jeffrey