We’re only four months into 2011 and already six members of the Denver Police Department have been fired. Just this week two more were fired, not for their inappropriate uses of force (caught on camera here), but for lying about the incident after the fact.
The fourth safety manager in less than a year, Charles Garcia, has risen to the occasion and carried the torch of Mary Malatesta, safety manager #3, who left the position shortly after firing two officers who were found to have lied about an incident involving the pursuit of a stolen car.
So are there more unethical acts being perpetrated by police officers? No, not necessarily. Rules were changed in October 2008 that dictated when an officer lied in connection with an investigation; he or she was to be fired, even for a first offense. In 2011 that rule has been enforced with a heavy hand.
The belief is that an officer who lies about an official act has something to hide, and that’s not too far of a reach to believe. In the video of these officers who were most recently fired, it’s apparent they acted inappropriately, showing an unnecessary level of force. And interestingly, the Chief of Police recommended their suspension for “inappropriate force” before they were fired this week by Garcia.Watch Full Movie Online Streaming Online and Download
It boils down to police integrity and accountability. The people who the police serve have to be able to trust them in order for their work to be truly effective. In appointing Garcia, Mayor Vidal stated “At the end of the day, our citizens should feel safe and they should not be afraid of our people in uniform.”
Another effort being made to mend the relationship between the public and the police is found in the push to streamline the disciplinary process. Garcia has been tasked with shortening the time it takes for an internal investigation to take place. To this end, he eliminated the Disciplinary Review Board, something he says will help get the investigation stage beneath the 60 to 90 day mark.
The police are largely ineffective when they are forced to enforce laws among people who don’t believe they can be trusted. Mending this relationship through strict accountability and no nonsense disciplinary measures is a smart move. The police have to act with the upmost integrity and not like they are above the law.
When you are arrested or questioned by police it is common to feel intimidated. But, you shouldn’t be made to feel that your rights aren’t respected. As a matter of fact, if your rights are violated during the arrest, investigative, or search procedures, there’s a chance the charges against you could be dropped.
If you are facing criminal charges in Colorado, contact our defense attorneys today for a consultation on your case and to discuss your potential options.