Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Police officer found to have testified in his “official capacity” when he referred to his job as a police sergeant


Police officer found to have testified in his “official capacity” when he referred to his job as a police sergeant

The New York City Police Department's Patrol Guide Procedure No. 211-09 requires a police officers to give notice of his or her intention to testify at a criminal trial to the Police Commissioner or to the Department's Legal Bureau.

When a police officer testified at his cousin's criminal trial without complying with Procedure 211-09, he served with disciplinary charges and found was guilty of failing to notify the Police Commissioner and, or, the Legal Bureau that he intended to provide character testimony at a criminal trial and that he did in fact provide testimony, at a trial. The penalty imposed: a forfeiture of 15 days of vacation accruals.

The Appellate Division sustained the disciplinary determination, holding that it was rational and supported by substantial evidence.

The court said that the Assistant Deputy Commissioner of Trials had a rational basis for finding that the police officer had testified in his "official" capacity at the criminal trial given that he referred to his job as a Police Department Sergeant and the judge in the case referred to him as "Sergeant."

Further, said the Appellate Division, the Assistant Deputy Commissioner also had a rational basis for finding that, even if the police officer had not testified in his "official capacity," Patrol Guide Procedure No. 211-09 still applied because the police officer conceded that it was his understanding that he was going to provide character testimony, among other things.

The decision is posted on the Internet at:
http://www.courts.state.ny.us/reporter/3dseries/2012/2012_03561.htm

Handbooks focusing on State and Municipal Public Personnel Law continue to be available for purchase via the links provided below:

The Discipline Book at http://thedisciplinebook.blogspot.com/

Challenging Adverse Personnel Decisions at http://nypplarchives.blogspot.com

The Disability Benefits E-book: at http://section207.blogspot.com/

Layoff, Preferred Lists at http://nylayoff.blogspot.com/

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