City Government

Former BPD Chief Opines On Outside Investigation

Guest Opinion
By MIKE MASTERSON

I’m hearing many people express concern regarding the mayor’s ineptness in the handling of daily operations.

From her confusing responses to the complaint nine police officers filed for workplace harassment to her differing statements on the Office of Police Accountability . The waters muddy even further with, a hastily created contract to investigate a retired captain who has sullied the reputations of so many fine officers.

What thought went into consideration of the many respectable and capable Idaho law firms who employ former United States Attorney’s office employees experienced in civil rights investigations… and arriving at a more affordable cost than what one Boise Council member described as “sticker shock”? Why wasn’t there time to expedite a process to seek bids from equally capable and locally based law firms? Perhaps if the mayor was more familiar with local resources she governs versus the powerbase that influences her from outside Idaho that decision would have been very different. We all see the need for expediency but not when it comes with a ready, fire, aim attitude!

Despite the early McCarthyism rhetoric of the mayor in initially casting dispersions on the men and women of a really good police department, I stand firm in my belief these detestable statements and writings were the lone beliefs of one troubled individual. From my perspective ready, aim and when sure of your target, fire would have been a more preferable approach.

All good investigations are focused on the “suspect”, when known, then develop accordingly. The “scope” should be focused on the Captain, his emails, correspondence and interactions with others then expand to his inner circle of friends and workplace colleagues; to those he supervised; then to the command staff he interacted with daily.

Because he was in a command position, I highly doubt that he has made any arrests within the last 7 years. His promotional peer evaluations, reviewed by department leaders as he progressed through the ranks of sergeant, lieutenant and captain won’t provide ANY credible leads or answer to the big question- why?. Most prudent people I have spoken to on this issue believe it’s better to use the precision of a rifle rather than a shotgun approach to this important inquiry. If there is such an urgency to seek immediate answers why wasn’t language added to the contract to request a preliminary report in 60 days?

I have recommended the department immediately initiate an ethics or conduct unbecoming a Boise Police Officer investigation based solely on his interviews and writings during the time he was still employed as a police officer but all the time writing under his now known pseudonym. Based on what I’ve seen and heard, a decertification recommendation to Idaho P.O.S.T is not only warranted but obligated. I’m not convinced City Hall feels the same.

There’s no doubt this investigation is warranted but not at the cost of a half million dollars. This is just one more example of statements and decisions from the Mayor’s office lacking sense. Citizens are losing confidence in local elected officials, particularly in regards to integrity and transparency, and it starts at the very top.

Masterson was the second longest serving chief in Boise history.

Comments & Discussion

6 comments for “Former BPD Chief Opines On Outside Investigation”

  1. Chief Masterson’s comments are spot on! The Mayor has shown that she does not have the skill or knowledge to navigate these issues. Who is advising her? It certainly appears to be out of state interests with an agenda. Chief Masterson should have been the first call the mayor made for guidance.

  2. Masterson, et.al., have already convicted the retired officer. If this is justice, then may God have a long talk with the losers.
    Who knows if Masterson is really up to judging the issues at hand.
    What are the real issues besides Lauren McLean is not capable of running a city with 275,000 people. What adjectives come to mind with our Mayor- Marxist, petty, needs anger management, picks sychophants and spends “like a drunken sailor”.
    Lee was the worst choice possible and he thought that he was invincible. This is from a resident who is not a big fan of macho cops.

  3. So an investigation is warranted.
    Just not at such cost?

    Perhaps that is just the high-end of the “budgeted amount” but with an expeditious outcome it may be MUCH cheaper.

    If in fact, as the FORMER chief says, this is a case of 1 officer, then the “warranted” investigation may be quick and billed at the hourly or a daily rate.

    As for the thought of local or Idaho firms doing an investigation, likely MOST if not all of them would recuse their firm as it puts them in a bind for any future litigation involving the city.

    The former chief agrees the process needs to be expeditious and to get someone on it right away justifies going outside the area.

    It is worth noting the officer now being recommended for being decertified was a beat officer WHILE Chief Masterson was the chief, 2004-2014.

    If I were a chief, I would HATE for ANY investigation to show this was a much bigger problem on my watch.

    What department efforts, during those years, were done to produce diversity training along with follow-up?

    It is warranted.
    It may be cheaper.
    Local firms would pass.
    Statements and accusations without examples.
    What is left? A political opinion.

    Maybe Mike Masterson will run for Mayor.

  4. CornPop Was a Bad Dude
    Dec 16, 2022, 10:13 pm

    How would Team Dave have handled this? Better or worse? Would Team Dave have ever hired Ryan Lee, or been so quick to engage an East Coast lawyer at $800/hr without any past complaints? Did the BPD have a better relationship with Team Dave?

    Was swapping out Team Dave for Trust Fund Lauren a good or bad decision? I’m certainly not a Team Dave supporter, and don’t even live in Boise city limits at the moment, but am curious if Boise voters are having some buyer’s remorse.

    EDITOR NOTE–In our opinion it wouldn’t have been much different. Team Dave frittered away millions on the Israeli architect for the library and hired PR firms for every fantasy railroad, stadium, etc. He did seem to leave BPD alone, but also interfered with a coroner’s inquest on behalf of a family. https://boiseguardian.com/2005/11/06/mayor-inappropriate-on-inquest/

  5. Other Motives
    Dec 19, 2022, 9:47 pm

    If a mayor has aspirations to be called to Washington and lick the president’s boots, it’s very important to have a witch hunt to brag about at the progressive wine and cheese party.

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