America has borne witness to a series of heartbreaking tragedies. In recent years, Anton Black, Freddie Gray, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, Elijah McClain and many others have died due to their interactions with police. Sadly, proper training and supervision could have prevented these unnecessary deaths. Under the leadership of House Speaker Adrienne Jones, the Maryland General Assembly began the hard process of reforming the laws governing law enforcement interactions with citizens with the passage and veto override of the Police Accountability Act of 2021.
As Attorney General I will:
- Ensure that local jurisdictions fully abide by Anton’s Law, an important piece of 2021 legislation that requires criminal investigations and misconduct records of police officers to be publicly available information. I will ensure jurisdictions comply with public records requests instead of stalling or charging prohibitive fees to attain answers.
- Develop a legal curriculum to train local Police Accountability Boards and Charging Committees, ensuring equitable treatment of citizen complaints and proper review of internal investigations.
- Work with local jurisdictions to uniformly train internal victims’ rights advocates, who work with complainants affected by police misconduct.
- Increase legal support to the Maryland Police Training and Standards Commission as they develop entry-level police training to improve and enhance courses that effectively teach the application of federal and state constitutional provisions.
- Offer advanced 4th Amendment training as a resource for state and local police agencies, their command staff, and veteran officers.
- Assist local jurisdictions in implementing Police Early Warning Systems to detect patterns of problematic police behavior and correct the behavior through retraining.
- Ensure advanced legal and ethics education in-service for all police supervisors.
- Provide training for local trial board prosecutors; offer experienced assistant attorney generals to local jurisdictions to prosecute internal police misconduct cases.
- Seek resources to help locals divert 911 calls to appropriate support agencies consistent with the General Assembly’s legislatively mandated study findings.
- Work with legislative leaders to give the Attorney General’s office primary authority to prosecute cases of police misconduct that resulted in civilian death.
- Seek additional resources to hire additional investigators and liaisons with local police agencies.
- Using the discretion of my office, collaborate with local prosecutors in investigations, where appropriate.