A push to create a citizen oversight committee for the Atherton Police Department ran out of steam last night, as four of five Atherton council members voted to table the idea.
Mayor Kathy McKeithen was the only champion of the idea at the March 17 council meeting, as the rest of the council said they thought new police Chief Mike Guerra should have a chance to put his stamp on the department first.
"We have a new sheriff in town," said Councilwoman Elizabeth Lewis. "I hope our residents understand that we've got to give this new administration a chance to do the right thing."
The town and two of its police officers are currently being sued by Atherton resident Jon Buckheit over the handling of a domestic dispute in 2008. Mr. Buckheit was arrested on domestic violence charges, but he was later exonerated by a San Mateo County Superior Court judge and granted a declaration of factual innocence.
Mr. Buckheit's high-profile case, along with other residents' complaints about the police department, has led some to call for the creation of a police oversight committee.