CINCINNATI (AP) — A consultant reviewing the University of Cincinnati police department for reforms after an officer fatally shot a motorist during a traffic stop says the university’s former police chief pushed aggressive use of traffic stops to look for guns and drugs.
Exiger Personnel Review found that former Chief Jason Goodrich told investigators he was unaware of the extent and motivation for the surge in traffic stops, The Cincinnati Enquirer reported Thursday. But other officers said the chief communicated a need for such stops, the consultant’s report said.
The number of traffic stops and traffic citations increased nearly 400 percent under his tenure. The report said there was an average of 86 traffic stops per month before Goodrich took over the department. That number jumped to an average of 271 per month after he arrived.
Motorist Samuel DuBose was shot and killed in his car last year by a university officer who pulled him over for a missing front license plate. The officer, Ray Tensing, has pleaded not guilty to murder.
Goodrich, who took over the department in November 2014, resigned in February. No telephone listing was immediately available for Goodrich.
The consultant report concluded that that Goodrich and Major Timothy Thornton — who also said he was unaware of the increase in traffic stops — were not being honest with Exiger or the university’s administration.
” … It was clear that Chief Goodrich embraced the aggressive use of such stops as part of his policing philosophy, that he communicated this philosophy in manifold ways to his officers (supervisors and rank-and-file alike), and that this precipitated the spike in traffic stops leading up to the shooting death of Samuel DuBose,” the report said.
The consultant also concluded that Goodrich’s contention that the inconsistencies came about because of a miscommunication between him, university officials, the consultants, and his own officers was not “plausible or credible.”
Information from: The Cincinnati Enquirer, http://www.enquirer.com