MADISON, Wis. – Madison Police Chief Mike Koval will not be disciplined after the investigation of three separate cases by the Madison Police and Fire Commission, but has been found to have violated the department’s standards of conduct.
The cases against Koval went before the commission in a pretrial hearing late last year related to alleged violations of the police department and city’s code of conduct in connection to encounters with Koval at the June 7 Madison Common Council meeting.
“The PFC found that Chief Koval engaged in misconduct by violating applicable standards of conduct with respect to one incident, but also found that there was no misconduct with respect to the two other incidents,” the PFC said. “The PFC has only three options for discipline when it finds misconduct by a sworn officer: suspension, demotion, or discharge. The PFC has determined that the chief’s misconduct in the one incident was not of such a nature to warrant any of those extraordinary disciplinary actions.”
“We have reached our decision based directly on the evidentiary facts as presented to us on the record and in our hearing, and reflecting our views of the credibility of the witnesses,” the decision said.
The complaints were brought by Shadayra Kilfoy-Flores and Sharon Irwin, the grandmother of Tony Robinson who described encounters with Koval at the Common Council meeting that include an allegation that Koval called Irwin a “raging lunatic.” Koval apologized for the statement. The PFC said the comments in were in violation of the standards of conduct, but didn’t rise to the level of suspending, demoting or discharging Koval.
“In our role of hiring the City of Madison Police Chief, we expected our police chief, as the leader of the department to serve as an example for the entire department, and always be beyond reproach no matter how frustrated or how harassed he or she may feel. Respondent failed in this instance.”
Koval was also accused of putting his hand toward his hip during the incident, suggesting a threatening gesture to his gun, but the PFC said it was not persuaded that Koval made such a gesture.
In the third case, Koval was accused of striking his desktop at the Common Council meeting when Irwin went past her time while speaking to the council. The PFC said they found no misconduct in that incident.