SPOKANE-- The public was invited to sit in on part of Wednesday's interview process for the new Spokane Police Chief.
Among the crowd were family members of a man who died after a violent altercation with Spokane Police.
Otto Zehm was buying a candy bar when he was beaten, tazered, and hogtied by Spokane Police and later died back in 2006.
Officer Karl Thompson was convicted of using excessive force and lying to investigators about it nine months ago. He still hasn't been sentenced.
Two of Otto Zehm’s cousins sat in the back of the room Wednesday, quietly listening to all three police chief candidates talk about their hopes for the Spokane Police Department.
KREM 2 News spoke one on one with the family about what they want to see in the new chief.
Sandy and Dale Zehm remember past events, but look toward the future for a fresh start. “I think it’s a really important decision that the city and the mayor has to make. I'm looking for someone who is going to be committed to Spokane, who's going to be truthful and honest.”
When asked what areas the police department falls short in, Sandy declined comment but says she views this process as a chance to start over and make things right. “It affects the entire community of Spokane and I think it’s good for the community to know the background and what each one of the candidates might have to offer.”
Sandy added how appreciative she is for the chance to sit in on the candidate interviews. “It's very, very interesting and this is the first time that my husband and I have been able to even come down and observe something like this.”
As for the future of the police department, and community, Sandy says she hopes for a stronger relationship between the two. “Just for everyone to come together more and for the police department to listen to the community.”
Just a couple of months ago the city agreed to pay a $1.67 million settlement to Otto Zehm's family. It also set aside $2 million for police training, a written apology from the mayor, and a plaque at Mission Park to remember Zehm.