PORTLAND -- Portland police were ordered Monday to reinstate former officer Ronald Frashour, who was fired after a deadly 2010 shooting, but Mayor Sam Adams said he would appeal the decision. The police union fired back Tuesday, saying Adams has turned it into a personal issue.
"Mayor Adams has turned this into a personal vendetta," said Daryl Turner of the Portland Police Association. He also said Adams stands alone in the decision and "it's time to end this mess."
Frashour was fired in November 2010 for unsatisfactory performance and violation of the deadly physical force directive after firing a rifle at 25-year-old Aaron Campbell, fatally hitting him once in the back.
Frashour filed a grievance and a union arbitrator ruled in March that he should be reinstated and compensated for lost wages. The Oregon Employment Relations Board Monday ordered that Frashour be rehired. Adams said that would not happen, and that police officers must be held accountable if they fail to follow bureau policies.
The PPA held a press conference Tuesday morning and said Frashour acted reasonably and lawfully. The union pointed out that the Oregon ERB was the sixth body to clear Frashour of wrongdoing.
"The time has come for the city to honor its legal obligations and return officer Frashour to work," a PPA statement read.
A protest was held outside the union press conference. The Albina Ministerial Alliance Coalition for Justice and Police Reform organized a demonstration and news conference to oppose the ERB's decision.
The group Portland Cop Watch also opposed reinstating Frashour, and a spokesman said the police union is showing a lack of respect for the community.
"This is sending a very serious message to the community that human life is disrespected," said Dan Handelman. "Particularly we're seeing over and over again the lives of members of our African-American community are being disrespected by our Portland Police."
The city attorney's office confirmed that legal costs for arguing against Frashour's reinstatement have topped $500,000. The cost will continue to rise if Adams pursues the appeal.
Commissioners Randy Leonard and Amanda Fritz have also said that they support Adams' decision.