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More than 20 senior DC cops to be dismissed, including several due to alleged serious misconduct

More than 20 senior Washington, D.C., police officers will not be returning to the force after the end of the month, with more than half due to alleged serious misconduct. 

The 21 officers had all retired and were rehired by the Metropolitan Police Department on a year-by-year basis, according to Fox 5 DC. These officers’ contracts all end on April 30.

The Comprehensive Policing and Justice Reform Amendment Act of 2022 prohibited the police department from “appointing police officers who have any serious misconduct in their background,” police spokesperson Tom Lynch told the outlet.

The law led to 12 of the officers being dismissed.

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After first being introduced in the summer of 2020 in the aftermath of the murder of George Floyd by a police officer in Minnesota, the law was later made permanent in December 2022 and transmitted to Congress without D.C. mayor Muriel Bowser’s signature, according to Fox 5 DC.

The bill strengthens police disciplinary procedures, addresses police use of force, limits consent searches, bolsters the office of police complaints, makes it easier for the public to access records and body camera footage when there is an investigation into possible police misconduct and barred the police department from hiring officers disciplined or fired for past serious misconduct.

It also sought to “unequivocally strengthen” a 1985 law banning chokeholds and neck restraints.

The contracts of the nine other officers were not renewed “for a variety of reasons,” Lynch said, although the details of why these officers are being let go are unclear.

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DC Police Department's SUV

“The DC Police Union was notified that twelve Senior Police Officers will be dismissed from service over the coming months,” the D.C. Police Union said in a statement. “Senior Police Officers are officers who have retired from the department, but returned to continue serving their community as sworn law enforcement officers. The reason that the MPD provided to the Union for these dismissals is the Comprehensive Policing and Justice Reform Act of 2022.”

“This bill, which is inarguably the worst piece of public safety legislation the DC Council has ever passed, continues to wreak havoc on the police department. It’s well worth noting that this legislation was drafted and championed by [D.C. Councilmember] Charles Allen and his anti-police acolytes,” the statement continues.

The union adds: “The bill prohibits the hiring of sworn personnel if they have ever received sustained discipline from any law enforcement agency. This includes the Metropolitan Police Department, meaning that these officers, who have spent their careers serving and protecting this city, are ineligible to be retained by the MPD due to prior administrative personnel matters, some of which are over 20 years old.”

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