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Village decision — No additional discipline for Meister

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Yellow Springs Police Officer David Meister will not be disciplined after a two-month investigation into his professional behavior on the night of a fatal shooting in the village in December, according to the Village.

In a letter to Officer Meister on Wednesday, Feb. 27, Village Manager Patti Bates explained her decision to not impose discipline in the case by referencing the report of pre-disciplinary hearing officer Jeffrey Hazlett. Hazlett found that Meister did not violate any local police department policies by not responding to the shooting while off duty but still at the station. Bates wrote that as a result of that finding, she could not impose any discipline on the officer:

“Although I disagree with many of Hearing Officer Hazlett’s findings, and I also point out that his conclusions directly conflict with the findings of the Clark County investigation, I have no choice but to accept the determination that Village policies do not expressly state that an officer — in uniform, on the premises and able to assist a fellow officer — is expected to respond to any call for service related to an emergent situation in which public safety and the safety of a fellow officer may be at risk. For this reason, I cannot impose further discipline on you. However, I want to be clear that, in my opinion, you did not perform your duty consistent with the spirit and intent of and the goals established in the Guidelines for Village Policing, other Village policies and your Oath of Office as a Yellow Springs Peace Officer.”

Although Meister will not receive additional discipline, a six-month performance improvement plan stemming from Meister’s 2018 discipline will be extended an additional six months starting Feb. 27, Bates explained in the letter. That Memorandum of Understanding includes the provision that if Meister does not meet regularly in mediated sessions with the Chief of Police, among other goals, he could be fired.

Read Bates’ letter on the decision.

Click here for other public records related to the Meister investigation and previous News coverage.

This story will be updated as more information becomes available.


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