Ed. Note: Councilmember Charles Allen previously wrote:
“I take the Council’s role in confirming a new Chief seriously, as I do our responsibility to engage District residents and our officers. The Committee will hold three public hearings in the coming weeks for public comment on the nomination — two roundtables held in the community and one public hearing at the Wilson Building. Dates and locations will be announced shortly.”
If planning on attending please RSVP at [email protected] so they can plan accordingly.
In an interview with the Washington City Paper, Jeffrey Anderson asked:
“LL: The FOX5 report dredged up allegations of domestic abuse and alcohol abuse, among other things. (Newsham did not comment for the FOX report, which disclosed that he had his service revolver taken away from him years ago when he was found passed out on the sidewalk.)
Newsham: More than 15 years ago I had a custody dispute with my ex-wife over custody of our two children. I’m not going to talk in detail about it. It was a difficult time for my family. I’m not going to criticize someone who I loved and who is the mother of my children. I’m not going to dispute criticisms. It’s something I have to live with. It troubles me to have my family have to hear unfair things that will be said. They didn’t sign up for that.”
Read the full interview here.
I learned that Mayor Bowser has nominated Peter Newsham, and I want to let the city know why I don’t think this is a good idea, and to urge my fellow citizens to contact their council members and ask for a public hearing on the new police chief nominee.
First letting me state angers me that this process has not been transparent at all. The mayor over sent out a survey for the city to weigh in on public safety, and in no way has there been enough time for her in her office to go through all the response before making her decision.
Now lets move to the nominee himself. Peter Newsham track records deeply concern me. He has a history of domestic violence in which he has admitted to beating his wife during a family court hearing. This means to me that he does not respect women, and will not respect the women of DC.
He has allegations against him that he mishandled sexual assault cases, while Newsham was at the helm of the MPD’s Investigative Services Bureau. Veronica Best was very vocal about the way he handles his 11 year old daughter gang rape, and how she felt that he lost the ability to be empathetic.
In 2002 he ordered the arrest of 400 protesters and bystanders during the 2002 World Bank-International Monetary Fund protests at Pershing Park. This would end up causing taxpayers 3 million dollars after the Federal District Court deemed these arrests to be ludicrous. He has also subpoenaed Facebook to give up information on everyone who was organizing a protest that day. 90% of the protesters were peaceful and this action violates our privacy.
In the Trump era we will have many protesters from in state and out of state. We need to have a police chief that will respect peaceful protesters and not give DC a bad name when people come to execute their constitutional rights.
I am hoping to spread awareness so that our City Council can hold a meeting to let the community weigh in on this decision.”