Updated 5:38 p.m.
A day after a political hue and cry arose to release internal affairs files related to a former Boston Police union president accused of child abuse, acting Mayor Kim Janey named an executive director to lead the new Office of Police Accountability and Transparency, or OPAT, which she said will begin its work by conducting a review of the accused officer.
Stephanie Everett, a Boston attorney, former candidate for the 12th Suffolk House seat and former deputy chief of staff to state senator Sonia Chang Diaz, will lead OPAT.
“As the executive director of OPAT, Stephanie Everett will lead the organization with the authority to review all Boston Police Department Internal Affairs cases,” Janey said, adding that the appointment and creating of OPAT is meant to strengthen police accountability to Bostonians."
The office is one of the signature recommendations that emerged from the 11-member police reform task force assembled by Janey’s predecessor, former Mayor Marty Walsh, last summer.
Walsh approved the panel’s recommendations last year, but until now the office had neither been staffed or funded.
Janey said Tuesday that her upcoming budget proposal will include $1 million for establishing the office, which will have a 9-member staff.
Everett, Janey’s office said, will oversee staff and report directly to the mayor’s office.
One of Everett and OPAT’s firsts tasks, Janey said, will be to review the internal affairs process that allowed former Boston police union head Patrick Rose, who is accused of abusing children over several decades, to remain on the job despite the multiple allegations against him.
“As a mother and as a grandmother, I was heartbroken and angry to learn that nothing was done to keep Mr. Rose away from children, or to terminate him for that matter, after serious charges were found to be credible by a BPD Internal Affairs probe in 1995,” she said. “As mayor, the likes of Patrick Rose will not be protected on my watch, and those who are complicit in abuses of power will be held to account.”
Janey’s status as acting mayor means the appointment is not necessarily a permanent one and could be subject to change, depending on who wins Boston’s mayoral race.
A spokesperson for Janey’s office said Tuesday that the city charter clause which specifies that acting mayors “shall have no power to make permanent appointments” should not apply in this case, since the OPAT director reports directly to the mayor like a cabinet official.
Everett will assume her duties on April 27.