Will the Police Union Oust Denver Chief Gerald Whitman?

March 18 2011, 11:00 AM

With all those allegations of brutality and a laundry list of problematic behavior in the ranks (Westword), the Denver Police Protective Association will hold an "emergency meeting" early next week to discuss recent disciplinary actions (CBS4). But don't expect the union to talk about how a few bad apples spoil the barrel. PPA members may use their collective power to try and get rid of Police Chief Gerald Whitman in a no-confidence vote. Though a union representative is vague about the purpose of the meeting: "Our members want us to do something"—their reason, ostensibly, is that Whitman has recommended the firing of an officer in an alleged brutality case.

The rallying cry for officers comes at a time when the police department must reduce its operations budget by $24 million next year (Denver Post). That could mean more than 100 jobs would be lost in the department, a pain shared throughout the city, which wants all departments to reduce their budgets by 10 percent in order to address a $100 million funding gap.