The Cedar Park City Council last week authorized the city manager to hire an Illinois firm to conduct an independent review of police policies and procedures related to criminal investigations.
The Chicago-based firm, Hillard Heintze, will oversee the independent review.
The Council’s unanimous decision comes on the heels of the Greg Kelley case, where the former Leander High School football player was sentenced to 25 years in prison for super aggravated sexual assault of a child. Last month, Williamson County District Judge Donna King determined his due process rights had been violated from a flawed investigation following testimony from a Texas Ranger, and granted Kelley be released on bond.
Kelley, citing the flawed investigation, called for the firing of Cedar Park Police Chief Sean Mannix and Sgt. Chris Dailey.
Following the decision, Mannix said he looked forward to engaging with Hillard Heintze during the independent review process in an issued statement.
“As a progressive police organization we believe there is value whenever we can get input or suggestions for improvement from experts in the field,” he said.
City Manager Brenda Eivens expressed confident in Hillard Heintze in a released statement following the decision.
“Hillard Heintze specializes in police accountability assessments and we are confident in their ability to provide an independent, unbiased review of our law enforcement practices and procedures.” she said. “The review process will commence as soon as possible and we anticipate their results.”
During the initial Kelley investigation, Judge King found Detective Dailey failed to corroborate information from the victim and did not interview any adults at the McCarty Daycare where the child victim was assaulted, nor did he investigate the other suspect in the case, Jonathan McCarty.
McCarty, who is currently in jail on unrelated charges, remains a suspect in the case alongside another suspect who has not been named.