Sources tell FOX 7 Austin Police Chief Art Acevedo has been reprimanded by City Manager Marc Ott and docked five days pay for comments he made about the February Officer-Involved Shooting investigation involving Geoffrey Freeman.
According to documents obtained by FOX 7, Chief Acevedo was issued a written reprimand and docked five days pay for "acts of insubordination, poor judgment regarding comments made during a pending IA investigation, and the operation and judgment concerns documented in (an) August 11, 2011 memorandum."
Also in the reprimand, Chief Acevedo must obtain authorization from Assistant City Manager Rey Arellano for any work related travel outside of Austin.
Below is a transcribed portion of the Written Reprimand and Loss of Pay email sent to Chief Acevedo by City Manager Ott:
"On March 2, 2016, I met with you to address concerns regarding comments you were alleged to have made on March 1, 2016 in an impromptu meeting with a Cadet class regarding issues related to the officer involved shooting investigation being conducted by Internal Affairs of Officer Geoffrey Freeman. In that meeting I directed you to let the administrative investigation process proceed in its normal course; to cease meeting with groups, including APD officers and Cadets, and talking about the matters connected with the pending officer involved shooting investigation; and not to meet with APA President Ken Casaday regarding this issue."
The reprimand states that Chief Acevedo met with APA President Casaday on March 3rd, the day after having a meeting with Manager Ott, and met with a Cadet class, for a second time, on March 4th.
According to the reprimand, Chief Acevedo met with Manager Ott again on April 12 to discuss what occurred during the first week of March and it was agreed that Acevedo's actions "had been insubordinate."
Acevedo said he respectfully differs with the City Manager and the APA about the public remarks. He released the following statement to FOX 7:
I acted in the best interests of the City of Austin, Austin Police Department, and community after a tragic incident that cost a young life and ended a police officer's career. While I disagree with the Manager's reprimand, I recognize his right to exercise that authority. The manager and I have worked together for nearly nine years. Disagreements are inevitable. I look forward to putting this behind us and continuing a productive partnership.
In documents received by FOX 7, Acevedo said he did not hold a meeting with the APA president, instead he spoke with him briefly at an event.
In regards to the followup meeting with cadets, Acevedo said he wanted to stress the need for them to understand the law, policy and tactics when it comes to use of deadly force. He said there was some confusion about the law after the initial visit.
Below is a transcribed version of a message sent to Chief Acevedo from Rey Arellano, the Assistant City Manager, on April 12, 2016.
On March 2, 2016, the City Manager and I met with you to address concerns regarding comments you are alleged to have made at show-ups and a Cadet class regarding issues related to the officer involved investigation being conducted by Internal Affairs of Officer Geoffrey Freeman. We have since received information that you may have violated certain directives the Manager gave you on that date. Specifically it is alleged that you met with APA President Casaday and members of the Academy Staff and discussed events that occurred at the Academy earlier that week. If these allegations are true, both of these actions were in direct violation of the directives the Manager gave you on March 2nd and would constitute insubordination.
You are being provided an opportunity to respond to this complaint with the City Manager.