Florida Officers Lose Claim For Malicious Prosecution

In 2011, Sergeant Omar Paez, Sergeant Lyndean Peters, and Officer Yovany Diaz of the Golden Beach Police Department in Florida were arrested on various charges of public corruption. The officers were accused of, among other things, fraudulently failing to report off-duty police work that would have required them to pay administrative fees to the Department. […]

A Captain, A Polygrapher, Women, Bikers, And Protected Speech

On December 31, 2013, Paul Carey retired from the Maryland Natural Resources Police (MNRP) after 26 years of service. He began working for Maryland’s Department of Natural Resources (DNR) in August 2015. On May 25, 2017, three months before Carey’s contract expired, the Department abruptly fired him without giving him a reason for his termination. […]

Only Union, Not Firefighter, Has Right To Challenge Arbitration Decision

Sean Gannon was a firefighter for the City of Pawtucket, Rhode Island. Local 1261 of the IAFF represents the City’s firefighters. The City terminated Gannon in November 2013 and Local 1261 challenged the termination decision through the arbitration process. After several days of hearings, the Arbitrator rendered a decision on March 2, 2016, finding in […]

Blanket ‘Gag Order’ Violates Bargaining Law

Santa Clara County in California is in a bargaining relationship with the Santa Clara County Correctional Peace Officers’ Association. Lance Scimeca was elected Association President in 2012. No Association members have release time from the County to act as union representatives. In August 2015, the parties were negotiating a successor Memorandum of Understanding (California’s equivalent […]

Exclusionary Rule Does Not Apply In Disciplinary Appeal

Ernesto Ramirez, Jr., was a correctional officer with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. On December 10, 2011, Ramirez attended a social gathering at the home of a fellow correctional officer, Jorge Molina. At the get-together, Ramirez was in possession of his off-duty firearm while consuming alcohol, which was against Department policy. Ramirez also […]

The Lesser The Discipline, The Less ‘Process That Is Due’

Like most Supreme Court opinions, the procedural due process decision in Cleveland Board of Education v. Loudermill, 470 U.S. 532 (1985) is painted with a very broad brush. This has left it to the lower courts to more precisely define the amount of ‘process that is due’ under Loudermill. As illustrated by a Pennsylvania case, […]

Denial Of Transfer Can Be ‘Adverse Employment Action’

Employment discrimination lawsuits require a measurable amount of harm towards an employee or an applicant, harm usually quantified by the phrase “adverse employment action.” Some employer decisions – terminations, refusals to hire, demotions, suspensions, etc. – easily fall into the rubric of “adverse employment action.” But what of transfers, particularly where an employee’s transfer request […]

Officer Allowed Trial On Military Leave Discrimination Claim

Nicholas W. Emmerling began his career in 2008 with the Mountain View Police Department in California as a reserve police officer. Emmerling enlisted in the California Army National Guard in January 2009, and he was deployed to Iraq in August 2009. The Department granted him leave for one year until August 2010, after which he […]

Lawsuit Possible Over Whether CBA Arbitration Covers Retirees

A group of former officers with the City of Long Beach Police Department in New York sued the City, alleging that they were entitled to the retroactive raise in the contract eventually settled by binding arbitration. The retirees had been members of the Long Beach Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association, which was party to a collective bargaining […]

Janus Does Not Impact Union’s Status As ‘Exclusive Representative’

Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 925 is the exclusive collective bargaining representative for Washington’s publicly subsidized childcare providers. After the Supreme Court’s decision in Janus v. AFSCME, 138 S. Ct. 2448 (2018), two members of Local 925, aided by the Right To Work Foundation, filed a lawsuit alleging that their First Amendment right to […]

Arbitrator’s Decision To Reinstate Officer Survives ‘Public Policy’ Argument

With increasing frequency, employers are lodging public policy challenges to arbitration decisions that reinstate terminated public safety employees. The basic argument in such cases, which often involve terminated police officers, is that there is a public policy exception to the notion that arbitration decisions are final and binding. The exception provides a basis to vacate […]