After Complaints Decline, Boise To Hire Part-Time Ombudsman

Feb 27, 2015

The City of Boise is taking applications for a new ombudsperson to help oversee the Boise Police Department. But unlike in the past, the person hired for the position will be part-time rather than full-time.

The city says the job entails investigating complaints of misconduct against police, as well cases that involve officers using deadly force.

City spokesperson Mike Journee says a lack of work led to the change.  

"The ombudsman office has been responding to fewer and fewer complaints over the years," Journee says. "And just in 2014, there were seven complaints that they did formal investigations on. So that's really the strongest impetus."

The last person to serve full-time in the position was Pierce Murphy. Murphy was hired as the city's first ombudsman in 1999, and left to take a similar job in Seattle in 2013.

Since Murphy's departure, the office has been run by an interim part-time employee.

The city recently offered the job to a candidate from Charlotte, North Carolina, but later pulled the offer after negotiations stalled.  

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