Aurora may pay more than $400K combined to police reform consultants and those hired to investigate Elijah McClain case

Problem Solvers

AURORA, Colo. (KDVR) — The City of Aurora will pay up to $339,460 to a consulting firm, 21CP Solutions LLC, to help “strengthen community well-being and reform its police department” and at least an additional $90,000 to compensate the three independent consultants who are investigating the death of Elijah McClain.

The FOX31 Problem Solvers obtained the City contracts with each of the consultants. The documents suggest the independent investigation into McClain’s death may be completed by Dec. 31, 2020 unless the agreement is extended by the City.

“Consultant acknowledges that timely completion of the Work is critical and time is of the essence,” say the contracts with the three consultants investigating McClain’s death, Jonathan Smith, Dr. Melissa Costello and 21CP Solutions LLC – whose principal consultant is Roberto Villasenor.

Smith, who is the executive director of Washington Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs, will make a salary “not to exceed” $40,000 at a rate of $300 per hour.

Costello, who will serve as the medical consultant, charges an hourly rate of $500 per hour and will receive compensation not to exceed $25,000.

The police consultant charges $350 per hour and will also receive compensation up to $25,000.

The group is tasked with a scope of work that includes an investigation into the actions of “Aurora Police officers in response to the call and on scene, and during the subsequent criminal investigation and internal force review of the incident,” according to their contracts.  They will also “investigate the actions of Aurora Fire Rescue on scene and the administration of ketamine with regard to all applicable laws and best emergency medical protocols.”

The group must submit a written report to City Council and present the findings to the council in a public meeting.

The contracts also ask for recommendations related to best practices and future policies and procedures.

The City also hired the group 21CP Solutions LLC to consult with and reform the Aurora Police Department. The contract says the initial compensation of the agreement shall not exceed $339,460 and that the initial term of the contract shall run until Dec. 31, 2020.

The group, which identifies itself as a team of police chiefs and civil rights lawyers and leaders, agreed to consult with the City and police leaders “to address issues, challenges, and opportunities related to policing and public safety in Aurora.” The company will also “conduct a targeted but comprehensive assessment of APD’s current practices, procedures, and operations” related to use of force, discriminatory policing, civilian complaints and other issues.

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