It’s Time For Terry Bock To Step Down

by Staff on August 9, 2010 · 8 comments

in Local

Head in the assMonday, the merit commission for the Mitchell Police Department was requested to consider removing Terry Bock from hearing charges against former Mitchell Police Officer Blair because of impartiality.  They ultimately did not, but it has become clear that Terry Bock needs to step down from the merit commission.

In April, the conversation between former Officer Blair and Terry Bock — at the center of today’s discussion — was brought to my attention.  On April 30th, I requested that Mitchell Police Chief Jerry Presnell provide me with “recordings captured by Officer Blair’s in-car audio microphones on March 25th, 2010″, as seen in this letter:

On May 4th, Chief Presnell wrote:

I have copied the recordings from the in-car camera on March 25, 2010 as requested. However, they have been turned over to the City Attorney, William Mullis along with your request. I was not sure if they could be released, and was not comfortable making that decision, so I turned it over to him.

On May 17th, Mr. Mullis sent me a letter via First Class Mail and electronic mail, writing:

Concerning your request, the City of Mitchell must deny it as the record(s) requested fall into the statutory exception for investigatory records (Indiana Code § 5-14-3-4(b)(1).

In April, when I was first told about the conversation, it was noted that Terry Bock clearly demonstrated that he could not be impartial in the merit commission’s hearings regarding Officer Blair.  His statement today that “Steve Blair is an A-1, number 1 cop,” is clear proof that his mind has already been made up and he cannot have an open mind when hearing potentially new charges against the former Mitchell officer.

It is in the best interest of the citizens of Mitchell to demand that Terry Bock get his head out of his ass and now vacate his seat on the merit commission.

The Times-Mail has requested a transcript of the conversation, as well as the taped conversation itself, and — due to today’s public meeting — it is my understanding that these are now going to be made public.  I have heard from Chief Presnell that the City is now willing to provide these to me, so they will be posted as soon as I can obtain them and convert the audio into an appropriate format.

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