Cambridge police settle civil rights case

Brian Wright O’Connor | 10/12/2011, 12:18 a.m.

“There is little if anything being done to implement the recommendations of the Gates panel,” said Reeves, who is equally discouraged by what he sees as the ineffectiveness of the city’s civilian review board, which is now being run by the director of the Cambridge Peace Commission.

City Councilor Denise Simmons, who was serving as mayor at the time of the Gates arrest, faulted police for not better communicating reforms made in the wake of the recommendations filed by the Gates panel. “The police department needs to be more vocal about the changes that they’ve made,” she said

Richard Cleary, a Cambridge attorney who has been an outspoken critic of the police department and the city manager, called the expensive review a whitewash and a waste of time and money. “The Gates panel recommended that we establish a civilian review board, which we already have. That’s how divorced they were from the reality of Cambridge.”

Meanwhile, he added, “The Police Review and Advisory Board is still underfunded, understaffed and undermined by the city manager. The settlement of the Monteiro and Counter cases are just further attempts to put all the issues of police practices and the city’s poor management into the rear-view mirror as quickly as possible.”