Chairwoman Steps Down at New York City Police Oversight Agency

Chairwoman Steps Down at New York City Police Oversight Agency

For the second time in 16 months, Deborah N. Archer, a member of the agency’s board, was named acting chairwoman. She was previously named to the role in April 2016 after the resignation of its chairman at the time, Richard D. Emery.


Maya D. Wiley Credit Nicole Bengiveno/The New York Times

The agency’s executive director, Jonathan Darche, was appointed in May, after serving as acting executive director since November 2016, when Mina Malik stepped down from the role.

In announcing Ms. Wiley’s departure, the review board highlighted her efforts to open up board meetings to comments from residents and police commanders and to hold more presentations. The number of complaints against officers the agency received continued to fall last year, though Ms. Wiley said in an interview on Thursday that it had begun to tick up recently, a trend she said stemmed in part from the board’s increased outreach.

“Under Maya Wiley’s steady, effective leadership, the C.C.R.B. has entered a new era of openness and engagement, bringing police, communities and advocates together in pursuit of justice for every New Yorker,” Mr. de Blasio said in a statement.

Ms. Wiley’s tenure has also been marked by what police reform activists see as secrecy in the agency’s disciplinary process and sluggishness in confronting the Police Department. Before quietly releasing a report on the use of Taser stun guns last year, the agency removed language that recommended the police prohibit their use on handcuffed suspects and that highlighted how officers mostly used the stun guns on people who were unarmed.

Police reform activists, including Communities United for Police Reform, have said public trust in the review board process has dropped. Critics have also called for the agency to make its voice better heard on issues of police abuse.

“Over the last year, the C.C.R.B. has been disturbingly absent from the public debate about police misconduct and accountability,” Christopher T. Dunn, the associate legal director for the New York Civil Liberties Union, said on Thursday. “In New York City, we can’t have a passive and silent police oversight agency.”

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