Last updated on December 11, 2021
There have been some new developments the past few days with the current situation in North Bend.
Recently, the attorneys for former North Bend Police Chief Robert Kappelman and Captain Curt Bennett issued a response to the press release from City Manager David Milliron.
It is time for the City of North Bend (City) to be fully transparent and honest with its citizens.
This joint statement is in response to recent news articles regarding the retirements of our clients, Chief Robert Kappelman and Captain Curt Bennett.
Chief Kappelman and Captain Bennett retired due to their loss of confidence in City Administrator David Milliron and the City Council, plain and simple.
Chief Kappelman and Captain Bennett endured a year of David Milliron’s increasingly bizarre and abusive behavior, culminating in his inappropriate interjection into a quadruple homicide case in June of 2021.
A formal personnel complaint was filed against David Milliron in June for his inappropriate conduct. The North Bend Police Officers’ Association issued a unanimous vote of no confidence in David Milliron to Mayor Jessica Engelke several weeks later. In late August, Chief Kappelman and Captain Bennett informed the City and its insurer of multiple concerns within the police department related to underfunding, micromanagement, understaffing, and overtime which needed immediate attention.
The City failed to act on any of these concerns. The City Council failed to act on the personnel complaint against David Milliron. The City failed to address the vote of no confidence letter. The City failed to act on the immediate concerns raised by their police administration in a formal letter to the City’s attorneys and insurer. The City failed to publicly print the last three reports to the City Administrator raising concerns of overworked staff.
Once it was clear that the City was going to take no action on any of their police administration’s concerns, Chief Kappelman asked for a separation of employment from the City. Once again, the City failed to act and did not communicate with Kappelman for over three weeks on that request. The City’s only action was to order a “360-degree review” which can only be perceived as retaliation against the entire department and its administration.
The City’s characterization of the “abrupt” retirement of two decorated police command staff with nearly sixty years of unblemished faithful service is nothing short of shameful. The North Bend Police Department under the direction of these two police administrators flourished. Twice the department won statewide recognition for their exemplary work. The compassion of their staff was shared worldwide. Under a combined eight years of oversight, the department was not named in a single tort claim. Chief Kappelman and Captain Bennett should be honored in their retirements for their work and dedication to the NBPD and to the City of North Bend.
Jaime B. Goldberg, Attorney for Chief Kappelman, Code 3 Law LLP&
Roland Iparraguirre, Attorney for Captain Bennett, RI Law Group, LLP
I have also received further information from three different sources regarding the actions of Mr. Milliron. One source was from within the North Bend Police Department itself, the second was from a prior employee of the department who is now with another agency and the third was from a concerned citizen who sent a tip via the website. All three corroborated what I have learned so far and encouraged further investigation.
One of these people even asked me whether any real investigative journalists exist anymore. Unfortunately, at the local level, I would have to say no. I don’t have a journalism degree and have no experience with this work, but if our local news outlets won’t do it, I’ll have to do my best.
I submitted a public records request to the City of North Bend on 10/15. Stay tuned.
-Matthew Wilbanks (Editor @ Dailyresister.com)