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Volunteer explains why she resigned from police use of force review board

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Volunteer explains why she resigned from police use of force review board

By Victoria Spilabotte. CREATED Aug 2, 2013

Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- It's been seven months since the night Lawrence Gordon said a Las Vegas police officer shot him in the leg, but last week Sheriff Doug Gillespie announced that officer would keep his job. 

"When the announcement was made to the community it just didn't feel right for me to stay on the board," former Use of Force Review Board member Miriam Rodriguez said. "Quite frankly it feels like the board has no purpose right now."
 
Rodriguez sat on the Use of Force Board for four years and was part of the review for Officer Jaquar Roston's case. She called it quits when the Sheriff overturned the boards recommendation to fire the officer. Four other board members also resigned. 
 
"It should not be the Sheriff's job to undo or untie those decisions because he wears a badge, he wears a uniform and carries a gun," Rodriguez said. 
 
At a press conference Friday involving a different shooting Undersheriff Jim Dixon talked about the board's concerns. 
 
"We do listen to their opinions but that is only a part of the process," Dixon said. "When you're on that board you make recommendations to the Sheriff."
 
The Sheriff has the final word and some are now waiting to see how he'll rule on other pending cases like the case involving Officer Jesus Arevalo who shot an unarmed veteran in 2011. 
 
"I think officer Jesus Arevalo is done as a police officer," Steve Sanson with the group Veterans in Politics said. "If he was to get his job back it would be a real black eye on Sheriff Doug Gillespie."
 
Rodriguez said she spoke with the Sheriff on Thursday and expressed her reason for resignation. 
 
There are 15 civilian board members who decided to stay on the board. Members rotate position as officer shooting need review.
Victoria Spilabotte

Victoria Spilabotte

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Victoria Spilabotte is the weekend anchor for Good Morning Las Vegas, as well as a general assignment reporter.