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Rick Braziel Chosen for External Investigation into SPD, Thurston Protest

Elizabeth Gabriel


The City of Springfield has identified the investigator who will look into the local police department’s use of force during a protest in Thurston in late July. Use of force expert Rick Braziel will lead an investigation and review into the events of  July 29.

Braziel worked for the Sacramento Police Department for more than 33 years—including five years as Chief—and is a former Inspector General for Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department. He now provides organization assessments, critical incident reviews, as well as instructs in team building, community policing, and leadership.

According to The City of Springfield press release, he was the lead investigator in the review of the police response to former LAPD Officer Christopher Dorner who allegedly killed multiple California residents. Braziel was also a member of a team reviewing the riots in Ferguson Missouri and the St. Louis County Police Collaborative Reform Initiative after Michael Brown was shot and killed by a Ferguson police officer.

At a future public meeting, community members will have an opportunity to participate and provide their thoughts and experiences regarding the protest.

Braziel will provide a presentation to the Springfield City Council on Oct. 19, with additional details on the scope of the investigation and review.

The investigation is scheduled to be completed by Jan. 31.

For Braziel’s complete biography, please visit The City of Springfield website.

Elizabeth Gabriel is a former KLCC Public Radio Foundation Journalism Fellow. She is an education reporter at WFYI in Indianapolis.
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