Lodge Information – “Do not Call” List Release
Brothers and Sisters,
As you are likely aware, the Prince George’s County Office of the State’s Attorney released a copy of their “Do Not Call” List and related internal policy today: this disclosure immediately became the subject of widespread media coverage. Unfortunately, the majority of reporting on the subject has mis-characterized the list as relating solely to officer credibility. This is wholly inaccurate, and the lodge has taken steps to correct such erroneous information.
The FOP, the Police Department and the County Office of Law have engaged in nearly a year of discussions regarding the creation of the “Do Not Call” List. While it is completely legal for the State’s Attorney to maintain such a list, we have staunchly opposed the publication of its contents. As of two weeks ago, the issue remained unresolved despite further objections from the FOP, the Department and the County Attorney. Since that time, an appellate opinion from the Court of Special Appeals dealing with this very issue has been reported, and the State’s Attorney is now using that ruling, in addition to the repeal of personnel record confidentiality, as a guise for what is clearly a political objective.
Between myself, the members of the executive board, and our general counsel, we remain baffled as to how the inclusion of members who have not yet been found guilty in either criminal or administrative proceedings is appropriate: this category of individuals includes those who have never been the subject of an investigation and are now barred from disciplinary action by the relevant statute of limitations. Additionally, we fail to understand why former employees–people who will never again testify as a police witness in a criminal trial–have now found themselves the subject of public disclosure. It would seem that the release of this list was predicated not on a good faith effort to promote reform, but rather upon embarrassing and alienating our brothers and sisters who risk their lives for this community on a daily basis.
Despite our efforts to work in concert with the State’s Attorney in arriving at a policy that might be acceptable to all, the document released today is a far cry from the more detailed terms that we discussed as a group several weeks ago. By way of example, the version of the policy released today makes no mention whatsoever of the process for removing individual officers from the list upon exoneration. In light of this, FOP 89 will continue to draft policy language for inclusion in this evolving issue. Further, we will continue to work alongside the Department to remove officers from the list or, alternatively, to ensure that officers are not harmed by their inclusion on the list in the event that the State denies removal of their name for just cause.
Any officer on this list that would like to discuss potential courses of civil action for this issue should contact Shaun Owens. Mr. Owens has advised that there may be options available to aggrieved parties on a case-by-case basis.
AS ALWAYS, BE VIGILANT AND UTILIZE DISCRETION IN YOUR DAILY PATROLS AND INTERACTIONS.
Angelo Consoli Sherrice Carpenter Paul Mazzei
President 1st Vice President 2nd Vice PresidentShare on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Pinterest