Mayor says West Linn plans to release OIR investigation in entirety
Days after the dismissal of Police Chief Terry Kruger, the city of West Linn said it plans to release the entire investigative report justifying that decision.
At a city council work session Monday, Dec. 7, after public testimony from a citizen applauding Kruger's dismissal and imploring the release of the OIR Group report, Mayor Russ Axelrod said the city planned to do so after first addressing the "constitutional rights of individuals involved in the report."
The mayor said he believed the city would begin its due process on Monday night. The council voted to release the report to Kruger's lawyer for review to fulfill his constitutional rights.
The city hired the OIR Group in April to conduct an independent investigation of the handling of a racist policing scandal involving Portland man Michael Fesser that made national headlines. Kruger and other city officials came under fire when details of a settlement with Fesser became public. Kruger was placed on paid administrative leave around the same time the city hired OIR Group.
Fesser, a Black man from Portland, was illegally investigated and arrested by WLPD in 2017 as a favor to Fesser's boss Eric Benson, a friend of then-West Linn Police Chief Terry Timeus.
Fesser's boss asked for Timeus' help because he feared that Fesser was going to file a racial discrimination lawsuit against him and his business, A&B Towing.
The public learned earlier this year that Kruger also had known Benson, but apparently did not inform the city council or other relevant parties of that relationship until late in the lawsuit process.
The city hired OIR Group to investigate its own handling of the situation. Other agencies such as the Department of Justice are also investigating.
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