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Tuesday, November 10, 2009

What Happened To The O's Saltzman Editorial?

Posted by Matt Davis on Tue, Nov 10, 2009 at 12:41 PM

It's kind of a pain that nobody reads the paper any more. I normally check the Oregonian online, but was alerted this morning to an editorial that was printed in the paper version, but that I can't find on the paper's website anywhere. We also get the O delivered here at the Mercury's offices, for the sake of, you know, lining the dog's basket, but for some reason yesterday's copy has also gone walking. Anyway.

Yesterday's O carried a blistering editorial slamming the police commissioner for his "too little, too late" response to the death in police custody of James Chasse. It begins:

City Commissioner Dan Saltzman’s decision last week to increase the penalties for two Portland policemen involved in the now-notorious death of James Chasse in 2006 was too little, too late and further underlines the need for both a deeper public inquiry into Chasse’s death and strong reform of the city’s police system.

It is too late because everything about the Chasse case is too late now.

It is too late because changes in police policy and training in dealing with mentally ill people came after Chasse’s death, not before —despite numerous indications of the need for new approaches. And it is too late because the police internal affairs inquiry into Chasse’s death took three years —three years —to complete.

It is too little because a couple of weeks’ suspension, Saltzman ’s proposed punishment for the officers, is not at all proportionate to the damage —the death of James Chasse —done here.

You can read the rest at the Mental Health Association of Portland's website. Meanwhile we've got an enquiry in at the O as to why the editorial doesn't seem to be online. Perhaps it got someone's goat?

SCAPEGOATING SALTZMAN: Illustration by Wilder Schmaltz

Update, 2:04pm Oregonian managing editor Therese Bottomly says the missing editorial was the result of "human error." It's being posted now.

Update, 3:26 Here it is!

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