The Vallejo chief of police announced that he is launching an investigation after a former Vallejo Police Department official said he was released after attempting to end a tradition in which officials bent the corners of their badges in order to avoid the to mark people killed by them.
The story comes to light after a long investigation by the online newspaper Open Vallejo.
Chef Shawny Williams said that killing one
Man is never acceptable and he is deeply concerned about these allegations.
"I'm making an official investigation into the allegations."
Said Williams. "The request will help me understand the culture of the
Department in a bigger way and take corrective action. "
Former police captain John Whitney said he was seeking corrective action and was released for it. Through his lawyer, he said he learned about the practice of "badge bending" after the fatal shootout of 20-year-old Willie McCoy in a passing taco bell in February 2019. McCoy slept by the window with a pistol in his lap.
McCoy's family lawyer, Melissa Nold, said the Vallejo Police Department worked like a gang.
“Do these kinds of gait culture things, notches on your belt
It is a gait culture that is reminiscent of harming people, ”she said.
McCoy's brother Kori is not surprised by the allegation.
"We called it an execution of what happened to Lil Willie," he said. "The Vallejo Police Union is the strongest and most powerful unit in the city of Vallejo and they have been in charge of this city for almost two decades."
Vallejo Police Union president Michael Nicholini is on vacation and under investigation because he destroyed evidence from a controversial police shootout. He said he had no knowledge that badge bending was a practice of Vallejo officers.
"All of these are recent allegations of wrongdoing
invented to advance a story that doesn't exist, ”he said.
Williams said he would start the internal investigation that
could become an official investigation if sufficient evidence is found. He is
not rule out an investigation by third parties.