This isn’t over. A federal judge ordered a preliminary injunction, reinstating Catherine McNeilly to police commander, as she has reasonable likelyhood of success in her suit. A full trial is set to take place in which the Mayor will be asked to give sworn testimony.
“It was a decision that was made by the chief, and I supported that decision” said Ravenstahl, passing the buck maybe a hair.
A spokesman at his office stressed this is only the beginning. With an election looming, we wonder what Ravenstahl has to lose by graciously burying the hatchet, especially as McNeilly will resume her commandership without the confidence of city hall.
“The public interest is always served by disclosure of wrongdoing and undue and/or inappropriate influence by public officials in police department matters,” Judge Ambrose said. “The chilling effect of discipline and demotion to a police officer who makes a good faith report of what she believes in good faith to be wrongdoing and inappropriate influence in government never serves the public interest.”
The Comet wishes it had the audio of McNeilly’s ACLU attorney hailing the decision as victory for truth, justice, and apple pie — and a clear signal to government workers across the U.S.A. that you will be protected if your conscience tells you to speak out.
Judge Ambrose insists this is not about corruption at the police department, but wrongdoing (is that much like evildoing?) at City Hall. Ravenstahl flatly denies both.
Addendum: Am I the only one mentally confusing the names “Ravenstahl” and “Roethlisberger“? Does that carry significance?