About Us

About Us

The Office of Police Accountability (OPA) safeguards a culture of accountability within the Seattle Police Department (SPD). The OPA ensures that the actions of SPD employees are constitutional and in compliance with federal, state, and local laws by conducting thorough, objective and timely investigations, recommending improvements to polices and training, and engaging in collaborative initiatives that promote systemic advancements. OPA is a hybrid oversight-agency comprised of both sworn and civilian personnel. The OPA Director, Chief of Staff, and Director of Investigations are civilians while sworn SPD Sergeants conduct the investigations initiated and referred to the OPA. Under legislation passed in 2017 by the Seattle City Council, OPA will eventually have a combination of both sworn and civilian investigators, as well as civilian Community Engagement Specialists who will work directly with the community.


Andrew Myerberg, OPA Director

Andrew Myerberg, a civilian lawyer, was sworn in by Mayor Tim Burgess November 21, 2017, to serve as the first OPA Director under the new police accountability legislation adopted in May of 2017. Andrew leads the work of OPA by overseeing the intake, classification, and investigation of complaints, certifying investigative findings, suggesting revisions and clarifications to Seattle Police Department policies, and making recommendations on discipline to the Chief of Police.

Andrew comes to OPA from the Seattle City Attorney's Office, where he was the lead attorney for the City of Seattle in the Consent Decree over the Seattle Police Department and provided legal advice to City departments on criminal justice and law enforcement issues. Andrew also previously served as legal counsel to the Community Police Commission.

Education
• American University, Washington College of Law - Juris Doctorate
• Hamilton College - Bachelor of Arts


Tonia S. Winchester, Deputy Director - Chief of Staff

As the Chief of Staff, Tonia plans and directs all administrative, financial, and operational activities necessary to accomplish the work of OPA's twenty-four civilian and sworn personnel. Under new legislation requiring increased reporting and accountability, Tonia directly manages OPA’s strategic planning and governance as well as outreach and communication efforts. Tonia ensures all projects and programs are aligned with the OPA’s vision, mission, and values. In addition to serving as Acting Director, Tonia advises on critical investigations and works alongside community members, local leaders, police officers, and the OPA staff, to ensure the OPA brings independent, transparent and trusted oversight of the SPD.

Tonia transitioned into the field of police accountability after serving as a prosecutor for the cities of Seattle and Wenatchee, as well as being the Outreach Director for the New Approach Washington campaign that legalized marijuana in Washington state. Tonia's Persian heritage, combined with her professional experiences, are the foundation for her passion to ensure constitutional and bias-free policing.
 
Tonia received a Juris Doctorate from the Seattle University School of Law and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Washington.

Deputy Director - Investigations (Currently Vacant)


Anne Bettesworth, Compliance, Policy & Research Manager

Anne leads OPA’s work in the areas of compliance, policy, and research. With a focus on achieving and maintaining compliance with all legal and organizational mandates, Anne and her team produce the annual report, implement programmatic changes, and revise the OPA Manual. When a deficiency in SPD policy or training is discovered, Anne leads the process of making recommendations to ameliorate the problem. With OPA’s mission in mind, she analyzes SPD policy, works with SPD and other system partners to create workable solutions, and then drafts written communication to convey that information to stakeholders. In addition, Anne is tasked with creating innovative solutions to improve OPA efficiency and effectiveness by evaluating police accountability trends, research, best practices, and OPA data.

Anne came to OPA after spending four years providing strategic policy advice to help the Seattle Community Police Commission fulfill its responsibilities under the Consent Decree. Her previous professional experiences also include working for the Council of State Governments Justice Center, the American Psychological Association's Science Government Relations Office, and the Office of Congressman Jim McDermott.
 
Anne has a Master's in Public Administration from The George Washington University and a Bachelor's in Political Science from the University of Washington.


Miriam VonAschen-Cook, Management Systems Analyst

Miriam has 20 years of experience as an information technology and data systems professional. She holds a Bachelor's degree from Oklahoma State University where she studied Political Science and American Studies. Miriam’s role at OPA utilizes data to report on police accountability trends and extrapolate useful and pertinent information for OPA and Seattle’s police accountability partners. Miriam is passionate about serving the community and she believes that creating an avenue of trust between the community and police is a vital duty of OPA.


 
Kajhyla Washington, Admin Specialist III

Kajhyla came to OPA from the City Attorney's Office, having worked with both the Civil and Criminal Division. Her duties at OPA include providing direct support to the OPA Director and Deputy Director in scheduling, processing requests, and general office management and support to the unit. Growing up in a community that lacked strong ties with the police, Kajhyla welcomed the opportunity to work within an organization looking to help bridge the gap between minority communities and law enforcement. In addition to her work within OPA, Kajhyla holds an Associates of Applied Science in Paralegal Studies and a Bachelors of Science in Interdisciplinary Social Science from Central Washington University. Kajhyla plans to attend law school and hopes to pursue a career in Public Policy and Legislation.

 
Hope Barnes, Admin Specialist II

As an Admin II, Hope’s primary duty is to process incoming OPA complaints and organize intake files for the OPA Sergeants. She has previously interned for the Spokane Office of Police Ombudsman, a fellow civilian oversight agency. Hope has a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology from Whitworth University and plans to pursue a Juris Doctorate degree in the near future. She is very passionate about politics and social justice; her goal is to pursue a career as a Civil Rights attorney.

 
Kristina Adams, Admin Specialist I

As an Admin Specialist, Kristina focuses on transcriptions, clerical operations, and organizational support of the OPA team. She is fascinated by the work the OPA does and believes the department plays an important role in bridging the gap between civilian and sworn communities. She enjoys helping her community and is honored to serve the City of Seattle. Kristina has a Master’s in Design from Goldsmiths, University of London, loves art and problem solving, and has lectured internationally.

 
Puao Savusa, Admin Specialist I

Puao comes from a family of community organizers so her upbringing includes exposure to many community experiences which has led her to continue working in the community with other Pacific Islander youth and families. Through this she found a passion for criminal justice/law enforcement, focusing on policy and legislative components in this area. She seeks to build accountability to communities and helping to build relationships that are based on trust and respect of the diverse populations as part of her work experience. At OPA, Puao mainly focuses on administrative duties that includes supporting the overall work of OPA. Puao recently completed her MA in Criminal Justice from Seattle U and holds a BA in Psychology from WSU.

SWORN OPA STAFF

The OPA is a hybrid accountability office that includes sworn staff. The sworn personnel come to OPA from a diverse set of backgrounds and with a broad depth of experience. They currently represent more than 150 years of combined law enforcement experience and have served with the Seattle Police Department for an average of 14 years. The Sergeants who investigate OPA complaints have knowledge of SPD training, tactics, use-of-force, and other areas. They have served within various departments including Patrol, Homicide, Force Review Board, Domestic Violence, Force Review Unit, Information Technology, Narcotics, and Education and Training.