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Timeline to fully staff Phoenix's police oversight office is 6-8 months

The new director in charge of independent oversight of Phoenix police estimates it will take six to eight months until his office is fully staffed.

Until then, there will be some investigations that the city’s Office of Accountability and Transparency takes part in or monitors.

The office has to be fully staffed before it can start investigations of Phoenix police conduct on its own.

Director Roger Smith also did police oversight jobs in Cleveland and New York City. He’s met already with the local union called the Phoenix Law Enforcement Association, which fought creation of the office Smith now leads.

“I think that it was very candid in terms of me being clear about what I intended to do. Them being clear about the questions and the concerns that they had,” he said

Smith would not say exactly what he told the police union he means to do.

He generally aims to improve investigations by going over evidence, asking specific questions, and having facts drive reviews.

Matthew Casey has won Edward R. Murrow awards for hard news and sports reporting since he joined KJZZ as a senior field correspondent in 2015.