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Non-Disciplinary Questioning Does Not Violate Bill Of Rights

Errol Cruz worked as a senior trooper for the Maryland State Police. In February 2018, his supervisor, Ser­geant Torres, noticed that “he could not verify Cruz’s location” using a GPS device installed in Cruz’s patrol car and discovered that he was not able to log into the GPS device through­out Cruz’s shifts. Such GPS devices are installed in all police vehicles to enable the State Police to identify the…

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‘Mere Technical’ Violations Of Bill Of Rights Not Basis To Reverse Termination

Eric Hiller was a police officer with the Rehoboth Beach Police Department in Delaware. In July 2018, Hiller was advised that he must complete a computer voice stress analyzer exam (CVSA) so that the Department might examine the truthfulness of Hiller’s statements made during his initial interview involving the events of a prisoner transport. A private CVSA examiner, Mike McQuillen was selected to administer the CVSA and Lt. Jaime…

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Florida Civilian Review Board Lacks Authority To Subpoena Officers

The City of Miami, Florida has a Civilian Investigative Panel (CIP), which is an independent body designed to investigate and review instances of alleged police misconduct. CIP also reviews police policies and procedures, with the ultimate goal of making recommendations to the relevant law enforcement agency. A significant decision from the Florida Supreme Court addressed whether CIP had subpoena authority, and how civilian review systems comport with Florida’s statutory…

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Polygraph Examination Is An ‘Interrogation’ Covered By Bill Of Rights

Davin Miller is a police officer with the City of Gonzales, Louisiana. Miller was the subject of an internal investigation stemming from an alleged off-duty altercation with his wife and her father. The Police Chief interviewed Miller on August 15, 2013. After the interview, the Chief ordered Miller to take a polygraph examination, which was administered by a special agent of the United States Secret Service. The Chief later…

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Maryland Bill Of Rights Does Not Apply To Some Cases

Francis Schmidt worked for the Town of Cheverly, Maryland Police Department. On January 25, 2015, he was terminated by the Department. Among other reasons, Schmidt was terminated for taking leave in excess of the amount available to him. Schmidt sued the Town, alleging that the failure to grant him a hearing in which he could challenge his termination was a violation of Maryland’s Law Enforcement Officers Bill of Rights…

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Statute Of Limitations Trips Up New Orleans In Police Discipline Case

Jamal Kendrick was a New Orleans police officer. On August 6, 2012, Kendrick, who was driving a one-man police vehicle, stopped a suspect, Tony Gaines, for a traffic violation. Kendrick discovered that Gaines had an outstanding arrest warrant for domestic abuse battery. Kendrick arrested Gaines for the outstanding warrant. During the arrest, Kendrick discovered that Gaines had marijuana in his pocket. Kendrick discarded the marijuana, declined to charge Gaines…

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California Bill Of Rights Claims Can Be Arbitrated

In June 2005, the City of Santa Rosa, California hired James Mitchel as a police captain. Beginning in 2007, various subordinate officers filed gender discrimination complaints against Mitchel and Police Chief Edwin Flint. In February 2008, the City informed Mitchel it had initiated an internal affairs investigation. Mitchel and the complainants were interviewed and an investigative report was prepared in March 2008, with a copy given to Mitchel. In…

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Evaluation Log Entry Not Discipline Under California Bill Of Rights

Scott Kansaku was a police officer with the City of Hermosa Beach, California. On May 2, 2008, Kansaku issued a citation to a citizen for having an open container of beer while standing outside a bar. That citizen’s sister, who apparently also received a citation for the same infraction, filed a complaint against Kansaku, asserting that he had “acted in a rude, angry, and derogatory manner toward …

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Union, Not Officer, Is Party To Arbitration Challenging Officer’s Termination

Lazario Ruiz was a police officer with the City of North Las Vegas, Nevada. Ruiz was a member of the North Las Vegas Police Officers Association. When the City fired Ruiz for untruthfulness, the Association challenged the decision in arbitration. An arbitrator upheld Ruiz’s discharge, finding that the City had just cause for its decision. The Association then assigned to Ruiz its right to challenge the arbitration decision, and…

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