A Blueline Systems representative will give City Council a July 24 presentation on the Asheville Police Department evidence room audit the company completed earlier this year. The content of the presentation, requested by Mayor Terry Bellamy, is unknown.
Unusually, the city doesn’t have any summary or documents related to the presentation on its electronic agenda and city staff are unaware of the specifics of the report.
“I haven’t seen any advance documentation about it because it’s being presented by a representative from the company,” Brian Postelle, a public information specialist with the city, tells Xpress. “We don’t have any documentation about that.”
He added that Bellamy requested the presentation, but he didn’t know when she’d made that request. Postelle later clarified that all of Council, not just the mayor, wanted the presentation.
Both the city of Asheville and District Attorney Ron Moore are the targets of an open records lawsuit by local media, including Xpress, Carolina Public Press, The Asheville Citizen-Times, WCQS and WLOS over failure to release the audit of missing evidence, which was completed in January.
New APD Chief William Anderson mentioned evidence room changes at a May 11 sit-down with local media and again in brief remarks at the May 22 Council meeting. But he specifically refused to divulge any details about the extent of the missing evidence, the state of the evidence room, the audit contents, or the specifics of security changes made to address the previous issues. Following the lawsuit, Council discussed the matter in closed session at its June 26 meeting.
The presentation will mark the first time the topic has been front-and-center at a Council meeting.