Hales criticized for response to O’Dea shooting

Federal justice officials say Hales should have started immediate investigation

Former 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.