Office of Oversight and Public Accountability

Policing in Grand Rapids 

We released an update on our independent comprehensive report on Policing in Grand Rapids on July 10, 2020. We also released the FY 2021 (July 1, 2020 - June 30, 2021) Police Budget.

The Office of Oversight and Public Accountability (OPA) was created in August 2019. City Manager Mark Washington developed OPA to serve as the liaison between public safety and community. 

The City's Strategic Plan highlights the importance of:
  • Enhancing trust
  • Ensuring the legitimacy of the police department
  • Ensuring the safety of every resident, business and visitor

The Plan commits to ensuring that “all people feel safe and are safe at all times throughout our community.”

The City recognizes that trust in our public safety officials is an important factor in reaching that goal. Civilian oversight of public safety is an important tool that helps to:
  • Protect civil rights
  • Support effective policing
  • Build bridges between public safety and community
  • Increase confidence in police
  • Manage risks
  • Ensure greater accountability
OPA works to create mutual trust and respect between our public safety departments and the community we serve.
Learn more about the work we do below.

Through targeted change, accountability, restorative justice, empowerment and engagement, OPA will help create and improve just outcomes and respectful relationships between public safety and community.

We're creating a strategic plan to guide OPA operations. The Strategic Launch of OPA is divided into seven phases:
  1. Research and Analysis
  2. Collaborative Design
  3. Strategic Engagement
  4. Strategic Plan Finalization
  5. Creation of Operational Policies and Procedures
  6. Internal and External Education
  7. Official Launch of OPA
We're currently in stage three - Strategic Engagement. Over the next several weeks, OPA will engage in internal and external engagement. There are several planned opportunities for Community Led Engagement.

OPA plans to reschedule the following events (new dates to be announced): 

March 19th – UCC Community Led Engagement

April 1st – Hispanic Center Community Led Engagement

April 2nd – NAACP Community Led Engagement

April 16th – Baxter Community Led Engagement

April 20th – Fresh Start Expungement Clinic

We're also rescheduling all face to face meetings.

Brandon D. Davis, Esq., is the newly appointed acting Director of the Office of Public Accountability for the City of Grand Rapids. In that role, Brandon will serve as the liaison between public safety and Grand Rapidians. 

Brandon believes that accountability, transparency, and collaborative innovation are the keys to ensuring the success of the Office of Public Accountability and the starting blocks of bridging the gap between community and law enforcement.  Brandon brings a wealth of public service experience to this position. Most recently, Brandon served as the Senior Labor Relations Specialist for the City of Grand Rapids. 

Prior to uniting with GR, Brandon was a noted trial attorney in Muskegon County and handled serious felony cases as a Senior Assistant Prosecutor. Brandon began his career in his hometown of Detroit, MI where he served as both a defense attorney and prosecutor. Brandon obtained a Bachelor of Applied Arts in Interpersonal and Public Communication from Central Michigan University in 2007. He then earned a Juris Doctor from Wayne State University Law School in 2010. 

Brandon also holds certifications from Cornell University in Diversity and Inclusion and Strategic Human Resources Leadership. Brandon is excited about the opportunity to serve Grand Rapidians in this new capacity.  He looks forward to partnering with community to advance the work of the Office of Public Accountability which will help to ensure that all people feel safe, and are safe, at all times throughout our community.