Farah Muscadin was appointed Police Monitor for the city of Austin by City Manager Spencer Cronk on Monday. She has served as interim police monitor since January.
As police monitor, Muscadin is responsible for assessing citizen complaints of the Austin Police Department; monitoring APD investigations of those complaints; making recommendations on policies, procedures and discipline; and conducting community outreach.
The office of the police monitor is a civilian, administrative role within APD.
Previously, the police monitor was also responsible for assisting the Citizens Review Panel in its oversight of APD. However, after the labor contract between the city of Austin and the Austin Police Association expired in December, the CRP was suspended due to a lack of contractual provision for its existence.
Muscadin is an attorney with more than 15 years of government experience. Before being appointed interim police monitor, she worked in the city of Austin’s innovation office and as an attorney in the public sector for Cook County in Chicago.
In a memo announcing the appointment to City Council, Cronk wrote that Muscadin “has taken the lead in researching and evaluating the needed changes that will determine the best future model for police oversight and accountability for our community.”
He continued: “It is important that our community have stability in the Police Monitor’s Office as we continue to make important decisions that will affect public safety and oversight.”
Since assuming his role as city manager in February, Cronk has made public safety a priority, most recently appointing Brian Manley as permanent chief of APD and overseeing the ongoing contract negotiations with APA.
APD has operated without a contract since December. In May, Cronk said he expects the negotiations to continue for “several more months at a minimum.”