Following Flask: Special projects for former Cleveland safety di - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

Following Flask: Special projects for former Cleveland safety director

Source: WOIO Source: WOIO
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Cleveland 19 is getting new information about, Martin Flask, the safety director during a deadly 2012 police chase.

The City of Cleveland has responded to several of our Freedom of Information Act requests into Flask, and what he does in his position as executive assistant to the mayor for special projects. 

Flask was promoted to his new role in February 2014. The promotion came amidst calls for his and other resignations, a federal probe into the Cleveland Police Department’s use of force, and an internal investigation into the 2012 chase. 

During the chase, 137 bullets were fired, and Timothy Russell and Malissa Williams died.

The city has informed Cleveland 19, that as safety director he received $123,185.50. About a month after he was appointed to his new job, that number went up by more than $2,000 to $125,649.26. He received another raise last year, and his annual salary is now $128,162.32.

The city hasn’t yet responded to a request for information about what special projects Flask has completed in the past nearly two years, or those he’s working on now. 

Cleveland 19 did get to look at his schedule, and saw the only thing that seemed to be consistent was its inconsistencies. The hours he works, and topics he has meetings about, change seemingly on a daily basis. 

One topic Flask did have a meeting about within the past month, is the abandoned Cleveland Police harbor patrol equipment. 

Cleveland 19 rode along with CPD Harbor Patrol nearly 20 years ago. Back then, five officers were certified divers who patrolled the lake shore and
the river, and on average recovered fourteen bodies a year.

Police sources told Cleveland 19 that the harbor unit was cut to save costs in 2004, and the equipment has sat on the property of Aviation High School ever since. 

Cleveland 19 contacted several different city agencies, to try to figure out if there’s a plan for the harbor equipment. 

City Hall couldn’t confirm if the equipment has been in the same spot at Aviation High School since the unit was disbanded.

Cleveland 19 was told that the issue wasn’t on anyone’s “front burner,” and several city agencies are involved and have to coordinate before more information can be shared. 

No one seemed to know right off which city department actually owns the equipment. 

Cleveland 19 has asked Mayor Jackson and/or Flask to sit down for an interview multiple times over the past week and each request has been declined.  
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