BPD issues statement on recent firings and “forced separations”


— There has been reporting recently on statements that have been made by Police Commissioner Anthony Batts regarding forced separations from this agency. When the Police Commissioner arrived in Baltimore in September of 2012 he was asked by the Mayor to assist in reforming the organization. The Baltimore Police Department was in need of change, the primary focus of change was to rebuild trust, trust in the community and to also build a stronger and better police department internally.

The Police Commissioner has said he will back his officers who do a good job, officers who make mistakes but their hearts are in the right places. The Commissioner has further stated that he has no tolerance for officers who have malice in their hearts and wish to harm the community. In law enforcement in particular it is necessary to recognize those individuals, to take the opportunity to train and mentor them or as circumstances necessitate to terminate.

Under the Police Commissioner’s tenure there have been a total of 72 forced separations from the agency. Twenty-six of those separations are terminations. The remaining forty-six are individuals who resigned or retired in lieu of termination. These are individuals who have been internally charged with misconduct, false statements, criminal activities, neglecting their duty and other offenses. Had these individuals remained on the department and had not retired or resigned they would have been terminated. These numbers do not include the hundreds of officers who have nobly served their department, this profession and this community who resigned or retired in good standing.

The forced separations assist in building trust both in the community and within the department. The community is able to tangibly see that their concerns and complaints have been heard and those individuals who have caused harm have been identified and are no longer law enforcement officers. The Baltimore Police Department will not tolerate misconduct and will not tolerate individuals who tarnish the relationship that thousands of dedicated officers have risked their lives to build. The Baltimore Police Department takes pride in its officers who should hold their heads high with the respect each and every one of them deserves. Police Commissioner Batts applauds those courageous and hardworking officers.