A Brea school board member is alleging authorities maligned her by publishing a scathing dossier on the city’s site as part of an intricate political vendetta to improperly portray her as anti-law enforcement.
Keri Kropke, a Black Lives Matter activist whose two-year term on the Brea Olinda Unified Board of Education ends Thursday, Dec. 10, sued against the city in November as a possible precursor to an official lawsuit. She is looking for an official apology from city authorities and possible monetary damages.
Kropke, an instructor and speech language pathologist in Los Angeles County, alleges Mayor Marty Simonoff worked with acting Cops Chief Adam Hawley to write a defamatory and false memo that contributed to her not successful quote last month to win a seat on the North Orange County Neighborhood College District board.
Kropke, who hasn’t been charged with a criminal offense, also competes the city engaged in an extraordinary information discard in August linking its site to internal memos, recordings and videos detailing her supposed interactions with Brea authorities during a June 30 Black Lives Matter march and two other unassociated incidents.
“Essentially, the city council is using its power against a sitting school board member to conduct a individual and politically inspired hit task,” stated Kropke, a white single mother to an 8-year-old Black kid. “Why haven’t they done information dumps on other people? This has never occurred in the history of Brea.”
City safeguards release of file
Brea City Supervisor Expense Gallardo safeguarded the choice to post the dossier, but did not talk about whether the city has constructed such a file on a public authorities or civilian who hasn’t been charged with a criminal offense.
“There is no benefit to the claims made in Ms. Kropke’s claim,” he stated in an email. “The authorities chief’s memo to the city council is 100 percent factually precise. The city has been extraordinarily transparent in this matter, partially due to the fact that of a request from Ms. Kropke’s lawyer to make all available material public, and by making exempt material available for public review.”
Brea authorities declined to discuss the dossier. Simonoff stated the release of the dossier appertained.
“The City of Brea has not targeted Ms. Kropke or treated her unjustly in any method,” he stated in an email. “Our officers have actually performed their duties with professionalism, including on two events when Ms. Kropke interrupted ongoing examinations. The City has been fully transparent on this matter as requested by Ms. Kropke and as is suitable offered the neighborhood’s interest in the activities of a public authorities.”
Problems first surface in 2018
Kropke preserves she initially drew the city’s ire in 2018 after supporting efforts to alter the name of William E. Fanning Elementary School due to the fact that of the name’s supposed ties to the Ku Klux Klan. She was the only Brea Olinda school board member to vote in June against renaming the school the Fanning Academy of Science and Technology.
However, a month later Fanning member of the family requested that their name be dropped from the school to end the debate. The school board ultimately relabelled the school the Falcon Academy of Science & & Technology.
Fallout from the name modification was swift.
“Immediately, stakeholders contacted me specifying they would run me out due to the fact that the Fanning beneficiaries were their friends and among Brea’s finest households,” Kropke stated.
Kropke was put under the microscopic lense again on June 1 when two Brea policeman responded to East Birch Street and South Brea Boulevard following a report that a man with a black backpack had used red spray paint to an electrical box. Officers quickly detained a man matching the description of the tagger and, about two minutes later, came across Kropke, who discovered the event.
According to an audio recording made by among the officers at the scene and consisted of in the dossier, Kropke can he heard asking the officer, “Is whatever OKAY?”
https://scng-dash.digitalfirstmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/keri.mp3 Kropke then recognizes herself as a school board member and tells the officer she does not know the guy detained by authorities. When among the officers explains they are there to examine a graffiti event, Kropke asked, “Well do we know that to be a fact or are we simply making assumptions?” according to the recording.
Kropke also tells the officer they require a search warrant to look inside the guy’s backpack. “Do you men have a warrant to go through his backpack?” she can be heard asking in the recording.
Kropke turns her attention to the suspect sitting on the ground in handcuffs. “Did you provide grant them?” she asks. “You do not have to provide authorization for him to go through your backpack.”
The suspect can then be heard informing Kropke, “I value that, I do know my rights, I did provide authorization.”
Kropke rejected hindering authorities, adding she believed the suspect in handcuffs might have been one her trainees. “I was not there to interrupt but to ensure a student is OKAY,” she stated.
Brea authorities reported their next encounter with Kropke was on the night of June 30 at the Black Lives Matter demonstration
Hawley composed in a July 14 memo to Simonoff and the City Board that about 40 demonstrators gathered at City Hall Park. Officers reached the group to determine the event organizer, discuss Brea’s assembly guidelines and find out of the protesters plans for the march.
“Before anyone determined themselves as the event organizer, a female, known to officers as Brea Olinda Unified School District board member Ms. Keri Kropke, told officers that no one was in charge of the event and refused to share info,” the memo says.
During the march, protesters quickly occupied numerous crossways before making their method back to City Hall Park, according to authorities. At the park, Kropke and others started yelling at officers, using profane and derogatory language, Hawley composed in the memo. Nobody was apprehended.
Kropke rejected tossing obscenities at authorities, blocking traffic or being disorderly. “It is categorically false,” she stated. “In truth, I enhanced a female officer who was coming to the aid of a boy.”
Still another encounter
Two Brea policeman also reported they were faced by Kropke on the early morning of July 2 after they detained a homeless Black guy believed of shoplifting a package of cookies from a bakeshop near 2445 E. Imperial Highway. Kropke had been washing her automobile when a man she acknowledged added to her weeping. Cops then put him in handcuffs and strolled him far from her lorry, she stated.
“When you see a man weeping a lot you can’t can disregard and walk away,” she told the Southern California News Group. “It is more incumbent on me to show care and concern for others. When you are a human being you are expected to represent everyone.”
According to a cops recording of the event consisted of in the dossier, Kropke asked and approached an officer, “What are you doing?” The officer explained why the guy was being detained and then instructed Kropke not to back up him.
The suspect eventually was launched after the bakeshop owner chose not to press charges.
Cops also stated the recording reveals Kropke taken part in a racially charged discussion with a 2nd officer who responded to the shoplifting call and is Black.
https://scng-dash.digitalfirstmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/tinner-5.mp3 Kropke told the officer she had seen the suspect formerly in a neighboring Train dining establishment, stating those inside used the “N” word to explain the guy. “I have actually seen from multiple shopkeeper here, how this guy is treated,” Kropke says in the recording.
The officer notified Kropke he would prefer if she didn’t use the “N” word, adding he thought her kid “would not appreciate her using that word either.”