Waterloo Residents Voice Their Opinions Of Trelka
The recent turmoil over police chief Dan Trelka's job status resulted in a packed house at the Waterloo city council meeting Monday night (Sept. 19, 2016).
The majority of the several dozen people who filled the council chamber and an adjoining hallway came to show their support for the chief.
One woman said removing Chief Trelka would be a detriment to Waterloo.
"Waterloo police and the community are in much better shape with his leadership than before he was hired," she said. "He has used great courage to lead and tackle the real issues that face the community of Waterloo. Mayor and council members, with create respect, you know that keeping Chief Trelka here in our community is the best choice. The challenges that we face as a community do not rest solely on one man's shoulders."
But, there were a few who criticized Trelka's job performance during the public comments portion of the meeting. Those people voiced their belief that the chief should be held accountable for the actions of the police officers he oversees.
Speculation that Trelka was being forced out of the job his had since 2010 ended earlier Monday, when Mayor Quentin Hart ordered him to focus on rebuilding public trust after several highly-publicized missteps involving white officers' interactions with black residents. Hart's directive means that Trelka, who also oversees Waterloo Fire Rescue as the city's Director of Safety Services, will relinquish those duties.
In all, 26 people took about 90 minutes to voice their opinions to Mayor Hart and the city council Monday evening.