SAN LEANDRO | Nov. 30, 2011 | Keep an eye on the growing professional discord between San Leandro Police Chief Sandra Spagnoli and Mayor Stephen Cassidy.
Monday's work session was dedicated completely to an update on the police department's doings this year, which included some embarrassing lowlights. The often complacent and unprepared council failed to ask a single question of any substance during the three hour meeting. At times, they almost sounded profoundly reverential.
In fact, if not for Cassidy's excellently pointed questions to Spagnoli, there might not be anything to write about.
Move along folks! Nothing here to see!
In addition to questioning the department's actions in encouraging more diversity within its ranks, he again indicated he is reticent about allowing the police chief to make decisions in joining other agencies in providing mutual aid for pre-planned raids.
Before Cassidy could fully articulate his question, Spagnoli quickly stopped him.
"I would request that one of things for reconsideration for this discussion is that these phone calls come at 1:30 in the morning and you respond by 4 a.m.," she said. "So, it makes it very difficult to go beyond the police chief to figure out if you're going to use your resources."
However, there is already a chain of command in place, she said. A hypothetical call from a neighboring agency already flows through the watch commander to captain to the police chief, she added.
But, Cassidy was not speaking of a quickly planned event such as Spagnoli laid out, but similar to the second raid on Occupy Oakland protesters that was planned days in advance.
One thing is clear, Spagnoli will fight hard for total control of her department no matter if it means publicly sparring with a mayor calling for more than incremental change than appears planned by the PD.