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Portland Police Deputy Chief Initiates Internal Investigation Into Hardesty Leak

The internal affairs investigation is separate from the independent review that Mayor Ted Wheeler announced Friday evening.

Portland Police Bureau Deputy Chief Chris Davis initiated an internal affairs complaint on March 5, the day after right-wing media published details from a leaked 911 dispatch report that incorrectly accused City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty of being involved in a hit-and-run.

"I don't know what Chief Davis told Internal Affairs except that he wants an investigation opened on this," says Lt. Greg Pashley. "He asked Internal Affairs to open an investigation into this matter."

The internal affairs investigation is separate from the independent review that Mayor Ted Wheeler announced Friday evening. Hardesty tells WW she learned of the IA investigation on Monday.

As WW previously reported, Gabe Johnson, who helped found the pro-police political action committee called Coalition to Save Portland, says a police bureau employee sent him the incident report on Thursday morning. The PAC then broadcasted the information in a Facebook Live video.

Pashley says he does not know if specific police bureau employees are named in Davis' complaint, and that it is unclear whether the complaint outlines specific police directives that were potentially violated by leaking the dispatch report that mentions Hardesty.

It bears mentioning that the bureau has a specific directive relating to the dissemination of information.

"Information regarding official business shall be disseminated only to those for whom it is intended, in accordance with established procedures," the directive says. "Members may remove or copy official records or reports from a police installation only in accordance with established procedures."

Pashley says internal affairs and the city's police oversight board, called Independent Police Review, can "review cases and can add directives to allegations or allegations to cases based on the facts."

The mayor says the city is resolute in investigating the incident.

"What happened to Commissioner Hardesty is wrong and unacceptable," Wheeler said in a statement Friday. "It's a reflection of broader systemic racism and it must be addressed. We need to get to the bottom of it as soon as possible. No one should be subjected to false accusations."