After initially defending "his" officers—and in the most offensive possible way—the chief of police in Fort Worth now says that Chad Gibson, who he accused of groping an officer, wasn't in the custody of the FWPD when he was seriously injured, but in the custody of officers from the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission. The FWPD and the TABC have both announced independent investigations into the raid on the Rainbow Lounge—and now the mayor of Fort Worth is calling on the feds to investigate:
Fort Worth Mayor Mike Moncrief called on federal prosecutors Friday to look into last week’s bar raid that resulted in a serious head injury to one patron.
Parallel investigations—one by Fort Worth police and another within the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission—are already under way into what happened Sunday at the Rainbow Lounge.
And, police chief Jeff Halstead has announced the indefinite suspension of bar checks conducted jointly by his department and TABC.
Sounds like Fort Worth is trying to throw TABC under the bus. Let's wait and see what the feds find out.
UPDATE: The mayor isn't calling for a federal investigation, as the report above suggests. The mayor's is calling on the feds to review the investigations currently being conducted by the FWPD and TABC once they're completed. Not sure what that accomplishes. Full text of the mayor's statement after the jump.
For Immediate Release: July 3, 2009
Fort Worth Mayor asks acting U.S. Attorney to review Rainbow Lounge investigation
Mayor Mike Moncrief released the following statement today:
We all join in wishing Mr. Gibson a speedy and full recovery.
Currently, two investigations are underway to review the circumstances and events that took place at the Rainbow Lounge early Sunday morning. The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission (TABC) is conducting an investigation and the Fort Worth Police Department’s Internal Affairs Division is conducting its own investigation.
I join Police Chief Jeff Halstead in encouraging any eye-witnesses to the events under review to come forward and share their observations.
Members of the City Council and I have confidence that Chief Halstead is leading a thorough and professional investigation. Once the Fort Worth Police Department’s examination is complete, I have asked the acting U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas, James T. Jacks, to independently review the findings of the Fort Worth Police Department’s investigation to ensure the department has thoroughly and impartially carried out its obligation to all the citizens of Fort Worth. I encourage the TABC to follow the same course.
Fort Worth has a history of inclusiveness, and the Fort Worth Police Department has a history of responsible and professional service to our citizens. The police department’s internal investigation and the outside review is meant to ensure all citizens are professionally and responsibly represented by our police department. I am most appreciative to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for assisting us in this effort.