AURORA, Colo. (CBS4) – Fallout continues after the release of body camera video showing a violent arrest by two Aurora police officers. Officer John Haubert and Officer Francine Martinez have been arrested and charged, but community members are asking questions about how unprofessional and even criminal behavior continues within the department.
“It is time to act now. We can no longer wait for all these investigations considering what took place,” Omar Montgomery said.
Montgomery is a member of the Community Policing Task Force formed by the city to identify problem areas within the Aurora Police Department.
Montgomery says while they have seen some positive changes like the immediate arrest of the officers in this case, the recommendations from the task force start from the ground up.
“We want more eyes on who is being hired and who is being disciplined and what that process is like,” he said.
In this most recent case Haubert was hired by the city’s Civil Service Commission despite having a prior arrest for pointing a shotgun at his roommate while drinking.READ MORE: 'I Dropped My Phone': Father Of Kyle Vinson Demands Action Against Aurora Police Officers
In response to questions about whether a background check was run and if the previous offense was taken into consideration, the commission in a statement said, “Colorado POST (Peace Officer’s Standards and Training) reviews the criminal background of all officers applying to be POST certified, and this officer passed that review.”
CBS4 asked POST what would keep someone from passing. A spokesperson for the Attorney General’s office who oversees the POST certification says they run a Colorado Bureau of Investigation and FBI background check, and under state law, anyone convicted of a felony, domestic abuse or a string of misdemeanor crimes will not be certified.
That doesn’t include all of them, which is why Haubert’s previous arrest didn’t come to light until now.
“I was made aware of that charge yesterday morning by my major crimes unit,” Aurora Police Chief Vanessa Wilson said in a press conference Tuesday morning.
In response to questions about that hiring process the City of Aurora released their own statement saying, “We intend to evaluate the background process currently in place and how to ensure decisions regarding hiring public servants will have the best possible outcome for the community.”
Haubert is currently on leave without pay. Martinez is on leave with pay which is in line with department policy for misdemeanor charges.