Seattle’s police watchdog agency, the Office of Professional Accountability (OPA), has been hampered by budget problems, secrecy and confusion about its operations, according to a report in the Seattle Times. The paper reports that the oversight agency’s former director, Sam Pailca, told a city panel this week: “In practice, it (OPA) didn’t work as smoothly as it could or it should.”
Pailca directed the agency for six years before leaving in March. Her testimony was part of a review of the unit’s performance ordered by Seattle Mayor Greg Nickles. The inquiry was prompted by questions about whether officers have been improperly exonerated by the city’s police chief after the oversight panel found evidence of misconduct.