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Committee changes stance on Greisen following article in the newspaper

A committee of Scappoose City Councilors assigned to review whether disciplinary action taken by former City Manager Jon Hanken against Scappoose Police Chief Douglas Greisen was in compliance with existing law and policy released its final recommendation earlier this month. Hayden

But the recommendation the committee, called the Personnel Review Committee, released is actually a second recommendation with different findings than the original. The PRC’s original recommendation — which Scappoose Mayor Scott Burge said was drafted in the first week of September — recommends the city manager reduce the discipline issued to Greisen, placing him on a one-week unpaid suspension rather than the two weeks Hanken issued.

The final recommendation the PRC released in early November, however, states, “the City Manager retract, and the Scappoose City Council oversee the retraction, all discipline issued to Chief Greisen...”

The PRC first met Tuesday, Sept. 3, according to the first document, and though the document is not dated, Scappoose Mayor Scott Burge said he had received the recommendation for review shortly afterward.Meshell

That recommendation was never forwarded to Hanken, however.

The first recommendation was drafted just before the Spotlight released its initial article concerning missteps Greisen was found to have taken by an independent investigative agency during a police pursuit Feb. 4. The original recommendation was never signed by the PRC’s three members, councilors Barbara Hayden, Jason Meshell and Mark Reed.

Asked whether the Spotlight’s article was the reason for the PRC pulling back its original recommendation, Burge said, “I don’t know for sure, but the appearance seems to be there.”

Reed declined to comment on why the initial recommendation wasn’t issued or why the two recommendations contained different findings. Meshell and Hayden did not return calls from the Spotlight for comment on the matter before press time. Reed

The PRC’s original recommendation contains no findings regarding the legitimacy of the independent investigation by the Local Government Personnel Institute that found Greisen had violated policies.

The final recommendation, however, focuses largely on the LGPI report as an “erroneous mischaracterization of the events of Feb. 4th, that also purposely omitted pertinent and material facts, to arrive at a conclusion that the PRC finds untenable, out of context and an egregious lack of professionalism.”

Burge said he did not know why the committee’s recommendation had changed.

The PRC’s final recommendation was released after the Spotlight printed an article outlining the details of the LGPI report.

The final recommendation suggests the PRC came to its alternative findings by conducting interviews and listening to recordings of LGPI interviews with Greisen and Anthony Miltich, a former Scappoose Police officer who conducted a controversial intervention tactic following Greisen’s authorization during the Feb. 4 police pursuit. The original report makes no mention of those interviews.

Both documents state that the issues involved were more related to policy than safety and that the degree of discipline issued by Hanken was too severe. Neither provided any analysis of the legality of Hanken’s actions, which is what the ordinance under which the PRC was formed specifies it to do.

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