By Robert Haugh
On Tuesday afternoon, the City released body cam video from Reuben Foster domestic violence call in Santa Clara on October 12. This time the video was unredacted.
We posted a story on Tuesday morning linking to the original video from the ABC7 News site.
You can see the new video on the City’s website.
The City says that “this additional footage, which now contains restored audio, can be found in Video 1 Revised starting at 08:30 to the end of the video.”
Here’s what we can hear the officer say according to Robert Salonga of the Mercury News:
“It’s Reuben Foster … Don’t you guys need to come out for the Niner thing?” a reference to calling a supervisor to the scene because of Foster’s high profile.
“Isn’t he the one who just had that DV case in Los Gatos that got tossed? I don’t know if he’s restrained,” referencing a possible restraining order
“It’s Reuben Foster,” with a response from another officer: “I don’t know who that is.”
“He’s that dude who got hooked in that DV in Los Gatos where there was like, the guns,” a reference to the eventual misdemeanor assault rifle charge to which Foster pleaded no contest
“This is a Niners DV.”
This is interesting. Why did the police department redact it from the original? Maybe because the officer suggests there’s a special process for “the Niner thing” or a “Niners DV.” Sounds like this incident got some special attention.
But Police Chief Mike Sellers said he knew nothing about it. At least that’s what he told Gwendolyn Wu of the San Francisco Chronicle.
Our sources say there’s no way Sellers is telling the truth.
It looks like there’ll be an internal investigation. Here’s what yesterday’s City press release says:
Upon review of the video recordings released by the Santa Clara Police Department last week, City Attorney Brian Doyle and City Manager Deanna J. Santana determined that one of the records contained information that was appropriate for public release.
“The City has now responded to the public records request made by several media outlets with additional audio and video with only proper redactions made to protect certain personal information.
“The City Attorney and City Manager recognize that the portion of the video that was redacted may raise new issues which will require internal review. The City is now assessing the Police Department’s actions in response to the incident in order to determine whether department policies were followed, including the proper use of body worn cameras.”
It looks like the City Council will back up the City Manager’s investigation. At the end of Tuesday’s Council meeting, Mayor Lisa Gillmor made a statement supporting the City staff on this issue.
“I think it’s important for the public to know that our City will act transparently and honestly. So I would like the council to show by consensus to support a thorough investigation and review into this incident by the City Attorney and the City Manager’s office and her team wherever it may lead. The council should know and the public should know … we should know if there was any special treatment or coverup.
“We have excellent officers in our department who protect and serve Santa Clara well on a daily basis. And we need to feel confident that our police department handles all domestic violence cases fairly regardless of the status of an individual or any organization that person may represent.”
Kudos to Doyle and Santana for being transparent. And kudos to the Mayor and Council for backing them up.
I believe chief Sellers when he gave his Hogan’s hero sergeant Schulz quote “ He knew nothing” let’s get a chief that knows something. Way to go city manager, Mayor and council for not sweeping issues under the rug. Those days are over.