Luke Ravenstahl opposes Domestic Violence


Post-Gazette:

Following an hour-long meeting with police brass, Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl said today that the promotions last week of three police officers with domestic issues were “unacceptable” and that the procedures for approving upgrades in rank are “obsolete and unacceptable.”

“Over the course of the next two days, we’re going to draft policies and put them in place” that will define when the police chief [seen here saying a last goodbye to his loved ones before he is thrown to the sharks] can and should pass over a candidate for promotion, Mr. Ravenstahl said. “Sergeants and lieutenants are promoted now without the ability for the mayor to say yes or no, either way.”

He said he knew of the well-publicized past of freshly minted Cmdr. George Trosky, but not about recent incidents involving new Lt. Charles Rodriguez or Sgt. Eugene F. Hlavac.

“I let the chief know that he should have communicated that to me,” Mr. Ravenstahl said.

It is a little bit troubling that the Mayor, seen here psyching himself up for today’s meeting with his political courage coach, seems more bothered by his not being informed than by the fact of a systematic police disregard for claims of domestic abuse, but he is certainly moving in the right direction. This might be, along with his somewhat precipitous firings of just about everyone in city government, a sign that the boy mayor finally wants to be a man mayor (strange locution? No stranger than “Woman Speaker of the House”).

Of course, before the brouhaha:

There are good times in careers and bad times in careers, and I think Cmdr. Trosky would be the first to acknowledge that,” the mayor said.

And:

The promotions were approved by Mayor Ravenstahl on recommendations of police Chief Nate Harper.

And:

Is Mayor Luke Ravenstahl listening to any of this? He appointed Chief Nate Harper, who selected all of the officers for promotion. The mayor has offered no answers other than a blanket endorsement of Chief Harper’s choices.

And:

Mayor Luke Ravenstahl said he signed off on Harper’s decision to promote Trosky “based on a 30-year portfolio,” not a few negative incidents.

And:

Mayor Luke Ravenstahl, who approved the promotions, could not be reached for comment. His spokeswoman, Joanna Doven, said the mayor would not discuss the promotions or their effects on women.

“He’s not going to talk about that,” Doven said.

So, he doesn’t think that it is a problem, he supports and endorses Nate Harper’s decisions, and he isn’t going to talk about it. Until, that is, the Post-Gazette, the National Organization for Women, and the Citizen’s Police Review Board make a stink about it. In that case, no more approval, no more endorsement, no more dismissing a history of violence both in uniform and out. It is “obsolete and unacceptable.”

I guess it is better to show up late to the party than not at all.

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