Jan. 24, 2009
BART issued a statement today regarding the new video KTVU aired last night regarding the events on the morning of New Year's Day.
"We do not tolerate police misconduct," Director Carole Ward Allen said. She chairs the newly formed BART Police Department Review Committee of the BART Board of Directors. "We expect our police to uphold the highest standards of professionalism and ethical conduct. Our Board Committee will be working to ensure that standard is maintained."
"I take this new allegation of police use of unreasonable force extremely seriously," BART General Manager Dorothy Dugger said. "I have directed Police Chief Gary Gee to conduct a rigorous internal affairs investigation into this officer's actions and to take appropriate action where warranted. In doing so, we will continue to work closely with the Alameda County District Attorney so as to not compromise the prosecution of the criminal case. As we said when we completed our preliminary investigation and delivered that to the District Attorney, this remains an on-going investigation. We will fully examine any new evidence or information including this new video, which KTVU aired last night."
Additional Questions and Answers:
Why didn't you know about this from your investigation of this matter?
In all of our interviews of people on the platform or on the train, we received no allegations of unreasonable force by any officer other than now former BART Police officer Johannes Mehserle. Alameda County District Attorney Tom Orloff has also stated that he is not pursuing charges against any other officers at this time.
What are the District Attorney and BART going to do about this?
The District Attorney is responsible for determining any additional criminal charges. BART is conducting its own internal affairs investigation about this newly reported incident.
Who is the officer on the video?
The District Attorney has requested that we not release the names of any of the officers involved in the incident on January 1. We are prevented by law from releasing the names of officers who are the subject of internal affairs investigations.
What is the status of the officer at this time?
We made a determination that all of the officers who were involved in the incident on the Fruitvale Station platform on New Year's Day would be placed on administrative leave.
How are you investigating this?
We are conducting our investigation in accordance with the Public Safety Officers Procedural Bill of Rights. The investigation will encompass attempting to talk to everyone who we believe may have relevant information and reviewing any and all pieces of evidence.