PHILADELPHIA — Mayor Jim Kenney and Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw today issued statements after reviewing the report of the independent consultants who conducted a comprehensive examination of the City’s response to protests this past summer.
The review was conducted jointly by attorney A. Nicole Phillips, a partner of the Philadelphia-based law firm Montgomery McCracken Walker and Rhodes, LLP, and CNA, a nonprofit consulting firm. Their mandate was to review the City’s preparation and response to the protests, demonstrations, police use of force, and other activities in the wake of the killing of George Floyd, and to form conclusions and recommendations for systemic improvements. Commissioning both firms allowed the report to be informed and guided by the subject matter expertise and data analysis approach of CNA with the investigatory and legal expertise of Phillips and her firm.
A. Nicole Phillips is a partner in Montgomery McCracken’s White Collar and Government Investigations group. She is a former federal and local prosecutor with a wide range of investigatory experience and has familiarity with investigating the Philadelphia Police Department. CNA is a nonprofit research organization with a strong history of delivering high-quality, independent, and objective reviews of real-world incidents to local jurisdictions and federal agencies.
“I want to thank Nicole Phillips, Montgomery McCracken, and CNA for their diligence in pursuing this difficult examination of a complex matter. I also want to thank all of those who agreed to be interviewed and whose reflections contributed to the findings. Finally, I thank Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw, who supported this review, and who remains committed to strengthening the Philadelphia Police Department and rebuilding trust with the residents of Philadelphia.
“The report, in my view, provides a comprehensive blueprint for long-lasting police and emergency response reform in the city. I look forward to implementation of the recommendations — especially those related to use of force — and I’m confident the Commissioner will work aggressively toward this. I fully accept the criticisms in the report of how our administration conducted itself this past summer. This report will enhance ongoing reforms of the Department, as well as our larger Pathways to Reform, Transformation, and Reconciliation initiative, whose aim is nothing less than the eradication of systemic racism in this city. Black and Brown residents of Philadelphia have suffered too long. With this report, the path ahead is clear, and I am committed to following it no matter how difficult — because their pain, evidenced in stark relief this past summer, must end.”
“Our thanks go out to Ms. Nicole Phillips, Montgomery McCracken, and CNA for their hard work in putting together such a thorough After Action Review. As I said from the beginning when I requested that this review take place, it is often difficult to take a look in the mirror and see areas that need improvement, and to that end, I wish to thank the members of our department who provided honest and candid interviews to the group.”
“While the analysis itself is extensive, I am pleased to report that a number of the recommendations contained within are already underway. Myself and the PPD executive team are in full agreement with the changes suggested by the group, and we remain committed to working with our partners and stakeholders to come up with creative solutions that will help put these recommendations into action.”