Cincinnati’s police union president is under fire by the city manager for violating police protocol.
Fraternal Order of Police President Dan Hils told WLWT that City Manager Harry Black sent him a letter Nov. 21 outlining the violation.
“Specifically, by allowing non-authorized access to media personnel to District 5 headquarters, your actions resulted in a violation of Sub-section (L)(4) of [the Media Access] provision,” Black wrote.
Hils spoke with several local media outlets, including WLWT, about his concerns at District 5.
“They’ve had a lot of problems with bed bugs, problems with mice,” Hils said. “Basically, you can bring a lot of it down to the fact that the building is inadequate in size.”
In response to Black’s letter, Hils said he should have asked for permission.
“I wasn’t aware that specific part of the rule, so I didn’t realize I was violating a rule until I violated it,” Hils said.
“I’ve had media in districts before when they’re reporting on something positive, and nobody’s ever said anything to me before. So, this time, when I’m reporting something that apparently some folks felt as a negative, then that’s when there was a reaction.”
Hils said he has not talked with Black directly. Black would not comment with WLWT on camera, but said he is aware of the problems at District 5 and is working to incorporate it into next year’s budget.
Hils, who worked at District 5 in 1989 and 1996, said there were problems back then, and nobody wants to listen.
“It seems like there is a lot of talk and not a lot of action,” Hils said.
“All I was trying to do is use my First Amendment right to speak out about a problem that I think that somebody should finally act on and not just talk about.”
Hils said he plans to write a letter to Black requesting specific testing to determine if there are unhealthy levels of black mold in the building.
“The officers are really glad that somebody is speaking up for them. They’re concerned about the building. They’re concerned about certain amount of illnesses that seem to be associated with the building, but nothing has been proven yet,” Hils said.
“There is no direct link or connection that we know of for sure. It just seems to be some statistical anomaly with the amount of folks that have had cancer that have worked in that building.”