Hales criticized for response to O’Dea shooting

Federal justice officials say Hales should have started immediate investigation

Portland Mayor Charlie Hales on July 27, 2016. (KOIN)
Portland Mayor Charlie Hales on July 27, 2016. (KOIN)

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) – Federal justice officials have criticized Mayor Charlie Hales for failing to begin an immediate investigation after the police chief was involved in an off-duty shooting in Eastern Oregon.

The Oregonian/OregonLive reports the criticism was included in a Justice Department review of Portland’s compliance with a police reform settlement agreement.

The agreement stems from a 2012 investigation that found city police used excessive force against people with mental illness. It called for a wide range of reforms to police policies, training and oversight.

Chief Larry O’Dea accidentally shot a friend in the back during an April camping trip. He informed Hales several days later, but the public didn’t learn of the incident for a month.

O’Dea quit in June amid a criminal investigation into whether he was forthright after the shooting. The investigation remains active.