A police disciplinary review board is calling for the demotion of a Phoenix Police officer who shot and killed a mentally ill woman. If Police Chief Joe Yahner approves, Percy Dupra will lose his rank of Sergeant. Police Union Representative and Sergeant James Smith defends Dupra’s actions the day

he shot and killed Michelle Cusseaux in August 2014, saying this was a clear case of self -defense as she threatened the Sergeant with a hammer. Smith hopes a lesser punishment is in store for Dupra.

The Reverend Jarrett Maupin also has misgivings about the board’s decision, but he’s at the other end of the spectrum. He says it’s wrong Dupra still has a job and a badge when other officers have been fired for far less than killing someone. Maupin claims the board gave into political pressure from pro-police groups opposing a harsh punishment.

Chief Yahner, who’s out of town, is expected to decide on Dupra’s fate by next week.

–Barbara Villa