At the police commission meeting, one of the topics is a review of Chief Ballard’s work. We’re told the information in the evaluation won’t be available to the media today but we will get it tomorrow.
Overall, Chief Ballard had a great review. In october 2017, Major Susan Ballard became Honolulu Police Chief in a unanimous decision. She’s taken the lead amid corruption allegations by former Police Chief Louis Kealoha and his wife, former Deputy City Prosecutor Katherine Kealoha. The federal investigation didn’t stop there. Another target letter was sent to City Prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro. To say the least public trust has been shaken. Despite that, the commission says Chief Ballard had a great first year.
“From the bottom of our hearts we want to thank you for the sevice you provided here in our home to our community in 2018. You’ve had an extraordinary year. You took a fractured and somewhat mistrustful department and you completely turned it around,” said Loretta Sheehan, Honolulu Police Commission Chair.
“It was a very in-depth review. I think the police commission really tried their hardest to get comments and concerns from everybody in the comunity. So they went out, you’ll see when you get it, they have the names of the people who made comments and what their comments were. So they really put a lot of work into this as well. It was not something easy for them and it was completely different from what was done before,” said Chief Susan Ballard, Honolulu Police Department.
We reached out to SHOPO, the police union. SHOPO was part of the evaluation and the president tells us they applaud Chief Ballard’s work when it comes to union issues and police safety. Chief Ballard has always pushed for transparency. SHOPO says they understand but also has to up hold their contracts which does not allow release of officers’ names in certain situations.