10:53 PM PDT on Sunday, March 20, 2011

The Press-Enterprise

Two Riverside community groups have refiled an ethics complaint alleging that Councilman Steve Adams interfered in police promotions.

The original complaint, filed Aug. 30 by leaders of the Eastside Think Tank and Riverside Coalition for Police Accountability, was rejected without a hearing because city officials said it was beyond the deadline for such filings.

Since then, the council has changed the rules to allow more time to file complaints and to have hearings held by a panel of city board and commission heads rather than council members.

The new complaint was submitted last week. City Clerk Colleen Nicol on Friday confirmed she had received it but no hearing date had been set.

As in the earlier filing, the community groups cite court depositions in a now-settled lawsuit two former Riverside police lieutenants filed against the city.

The ethics complaint alleges Adams interfered in the promotions of two officers, in one case because he thought the officer had opposed his 2007 re-election campaign.

The city charter says council members should not get involved with personnel matters, which are the city manager’s jurisdiction.

Adams has denied interfering in promotions, both in a sworn deposition and in an interview.

In a phone message Friday, Adams said the complaint “is clearly politically motivated by one of my opponents,” but declined to say who he meant or comment further.

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