A special meeting scheduled for tonight and the docket for the Jan. 16 Finance Committee subcommittee meeting include a resolution (see attached), sponsored by Councilmen Steve Stycos and Paul Archetto, that calls for the State Police to conduct a "thorough investigation of alleged police misconduct by retaliatory ticketing following the Finance Committee's rejection of the proposed police union contract."
The ordinance states that "governmental bodies have a difficult time investigating themselves" and "the citizens of Cranston deserve a police department that is trusted by residents and free of scandal."
The resolution, if passed, would echo the sentiments in a recent letter from the state chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union to Cranston Mayor Allan W. Fung that asked for an outside investigation.
Fung has hired an independent investigator to review the police department's findings, but both the ACLU and now Stycos and Archetto are saying a review doesn't go far enough and a full-scale investigation is needed.
The issue revolves around whether police were ordered to aggressively ticket the neighborhoods served by Wards 1 and 3 Councilmen Steve Styocs and Paul Archetto the night after they voted to reject a new police union contract at a Nov. 14 Finance Committee meeting.
Records show their neighborhoods were ticketed heavily the night after the contract vote in relatively close proximity to their houses. No other voting ward was ticketed that night.
Styocs and Archetto allege that the ticketing was done in retaliation for their vote — an assertion that they say is supported by both the number of tickets as well as several anonymous letters sent to them purportedly by police officers who said the order came from a high ranking officer.
The contract in question was rejected by the Finance Committee in a 4-3 vote — a major blow to both the union and mayor's office, which now find themselves looking at another round of negotiations.
For complete coverage of the issue, see:
After voting against a new police contract, Councilmen Steve Stycos and Paul Archetto say their wards were targeted by a rash of tickets in retaliation.
Cranston Mayor Allan W. Fung has responded to allegations of abuse of power at the Cranston Police Department over a flurry of parking tickets that two city councilmen say were issued in retribution against their votes.
allegations of improper use of police authority," according to a release.