SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -- Members of the Springfield city council are calling for a full audit of the police department after viewing surveillance footage of a student's arrest at Commerce High School.

On Thursday afternoon, a public safety meeting was held to discuss further steps they can take to prevent incidents of alleged police misconduct.

In the meeting local lawmakers questioned the city’s solicitor to see what power they have to take their own action in this case.

[READ MORE: Video raises questions about arrest of Commerce High student]

City council member Adam Gomez was the first to ask Springfield Solicitor Ed Pikula about the legality of the arrest at Commerce High.

"We still have oversight over a policeman's conduct if something like that was to transpire," said Gomez.

Gomez asked Kipula about a memorandum of understanding issued in September by the State Attorney General's Office.

The memorandum requires that school resource officer’s statewide not employ traditional police tactics in handling nonviolent school disciplinary matters.

Surveillance footage was released earlier this week that shows the encounter between the Springfield police officer and the student.

Springfield police announced that the case will be reviewed by the community police hearing board, but no date has been set and they will not comment until after the meeting.

"I still don't understand how the mayor can appoint someone to a position that legally no longer exist," said Springfield City Councilor Orlando Ramos.

The council also addressed the mayor's appointment of an interim police commissioner; claiming they eliminated that position when they created a five-member police comission.

Pikula disagreed with the council's assertion that the mayor appointed a commissoner ilegally.

"The mayor has the power and the authority to do a contract with someone to be that department head," explained Pikula.

"Under your argument you could just decree anything that we pass as invalid and choose not to enforce it I hope not well that's what it seems," argued Springfield City Councilor Jesse Lederman.

The Commerce High School incident is also under investigation by the Hampden District Attorney's office.

Copyright 2019 Western Mass News (Meredith Corporation).  All rights reserved.

Recommended for you

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.