NAACP raises concerns about CPD conduct
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) – The N-A-A-C-P is taking aim at the Chattanooga Police department after Dr. Elenora Woods called a news conference tonight to update the community on several cases involving Chattanooga Police.
The focus of the NAACP is currently on the investigation involving officer Benjamin Piazza, who was seen punching Frederico Woolfe in a video that surfaced last month.
Woods says she was informed Piazza is now back on regular duty.
We asked Chattanooga police about Officer Piazza’s status. They say he is on modified desk duty, answering phones and taking reports and that’s where he’s been since January 25th.
“We want the people to know that we are going to be transparent on this issue. That this is not a decision that the NAACP played a part in, nor do we feel that this was the appropriate decision to make,” said Woods.
Dr. Woods says she got the information about the decision after speaking with Mayor Andy Berk and that “under the pressure of others, our chief of police Chief David Roddy felt it was necessary to bring him back to work because as he stated people were concerned that he was getting a paid vacation.”
Piazza’s criminal investigation has been passed onto the TBI, but Woods says they are concerned about the departments mishandling of more than just this one case.
“We also want the community to understand that this body has also received a number of complaints from citizens of misconduct, alleged misconduct not only of victims in the community, but also from victims within the police department.”
The NAACP has now lodged formal complaints with the department of justice and the district attorneys office to investigate the reports of misconduct.
Woods was not ready to go on record with the details of alleged misconduct reported to the NAACP. We were told to submit open records requests to the department to get more information.
We will continue to investigate all claims made by the NAACP about CPD officer misconduct.