Concerns rise over behavior at Detroit Charter Commission meetings

Statement released

Bad behavior mars meeting of board elected to update Detroit city charter

DETROIT – For the second time since April things got out of control at a Detroit Charter Commission meeting. 

The board was elected to review and update the city’s charter, but not much has been done. That’s because at the last two meetings, there has been more fighting than working. 

There was noticeable behavior at the most recent Detroit Charter Revision Commission meeting. A video showed the board reviewing the minutes from the April meeting and concerns about behavior during voting. 

“The fact is three commissioners got up, while we were voting,” said Commission Chair Carol Weaver. 

The video showed board member Nicole Small trying to snatch the microphone out of Commission Chair Carol Weaver’s hand, not once but twice. The second time, the video showed Small grabbing the gavel and Weaver’s wrist. “Give me that. Let me go. Hey, hey, hey. Meeting adjourned, meeting adjourned,” said Weaver. 

Shortly after that, Weaver filed a police report for assault and battery. The officer stated he saw redness on Weaver’s wrist. 

Weaver released the following statement:

"Although the public should expect that at times there may be disagreement among commissioners over policy and procedure, at no time should our disagreements or ordinary conduct at meetings result in physically threatening behavior. The events of Saturday, June 22, 2019 that resulted in my physical injury are unacceptable.  There can never be any justification for a public official to engage in conduct beyond the bounds of decency, decorum and respect for the public and their colleagues.  

"The Charter Commission must act swiftly and firmly to ensure that the safety of the Commissioners and the public is protected.  I am prepared to entertain from my fellow Commissioners policies and practices  to address this issues directly as well as offer those of my own." 

This isn’t the first time Small and Weaver have disagreed. Their behavior during the April meeting was also caught on tape.

Local 4 reached out to Small. She said she couldn’t comment due to legal matters. 

About the Author:

Larry Spruill Jr. joined the Local 4 News team in January 2018. Prior, he worked at WJAX in Jacksonville, Florida. Larry grew up as a military kid because his father is a retired Chief of the United States Air Force.