Ex RPD Chief Singletary suing the city, report says city leaders did nothing wrong after Prude death

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — Fired Rochester Police Chief La’Ron Singletary is suing the city.

He filed his notice on Dec. 3. News10NBC found out about the former chief’s lawsuit when we starting reading a new report that says no one at City Hall, including Mayor Lovely Warren, did anything wrong after the death of Daniel Prude in police custody.

The report is by the city’s Office of Public Integrity, the office that investigates fraud, corruption and other problems in the city government.

It says the mayor ordered this investigation on Sept. 14, the same day she fired Singletary.

The mission of the report was to find out what did the mayor and her senior managers know about the death of Daniel Prude, when did they know it and did they violate any city policies.

The report says the conclusion is no.

It says "OPI found no evidence that any city employee within its jurisdiction violated city or departmental policies or ethical standards with respect to their actions in response to the death of Mr. Daniel Prude."

It went on to say "the matter is closed as ‘Not Provable.’"

"Do you accept that conclusion?" I asked.

"Shocked. Simply shocked," attorney Don Thompson said sarcastically with a grin.

Thompson is the attorney for the family of Daniel Prude. The family is suing the city in federal court.

Don Thompson, attorney for Prude family: "This happens at the end of March and the mayor doesn’t see the video until August? Well, something went wrong."

Here’s what the report says concerning the mayor:

  • It says she did not know more than what she told the public, including seeing the body camera video for the first time on Aug. 4.
  • But the report says Chief Singletary texted details to the mayor about prude on April 10 and talked to her about the Medical Examiner’s homicide ruling in an elevator on April 13.
  • The report says the mayor did not recall the texts from the chief and did not recall the elevator meeting.
  • The report says the mayor reviewed her text messages and found a text from Singletary on April 10, one of several that day.
  • The report says the mayor said the text did not include details of the ME’s report, only that the report was in and the chief wanted the mayor to call him.
  • The report says the mayor did not call the chief.
  • The report says the texts from the former chief went to the mayor’s personal cell so the report says the OPI investigators did not have direct access to them.
  • The report says investigators saw a screenshot of the texts and concluded they were consistent with what the mayor said.

I requested a copy of La’Ron Singletary’s Notice of Claim. The city has not provided it.

Singletary’s lawyers, Michael Tallon and Jon Getz, denied releasing it because there is still an active investigation into the city’s actions.

The OPI report "several opportunities for policies, procedures and standards to be created or enhanced in order to better safeguard against similar occurrences in the future."

The recommendations are:

  1. Policy that senior management team members notification of "critical events." A policy on what and when the mayor needs to be told about a critical event.
  2. A new system of providing documents requested under the Freedom of Information Law.
  3. A review of how RPD body camera video is accessed and controlled.