Case: U.S. v. Prince George's County, Maryland

8:04-cv-00185 | U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland

Filed Date: Jan. 22, 2004

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

In July 1999, the U.S. Department of Justice [DOJ] initiated an investigation pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 14141 of alleged misconduct by the Canine Section of the Prince George's County Police Department [PGPD]. The investigation followed some eighteen civil rights lawsuits filed between 1993 through 1998 by individuals that alleged dog attacks by the PGPD's canine unit. In October 2000, the DOJ expanded the scope of its investigation to include broader allegations of excessive force. The DOJ and…

In July 1999, the U.S. Department of Justice [DOJ] initiated an investigation pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 14141 of alleged misconduct by the Canine Section of the Prince George's County Police Department [PGPD]. The investigation followed some eighteen civil rights lawsuits filed between 1993 through 1998 by individuals that alleged dog attacks by the PGPD's canine unit. In October 2000, the DOJ expanded the scope of its investigation to include broader allegations of excessive force. The DOJ and the FBI also launched a criminal investigation which resulted in the federal indictment of two PGPD officers on charges that they ordered a police dog to attack an unarmed homeless man. See U.S. v. Mohr, 318 F.3d 613 (4th Cir. 2003).

Following the DOJ's investigation, DOJ, PGPD and local FOP officials met and negotiated agreements to address all of the DOJ's concerns. The settlement agreements took the form of a Memorandum of Agreement [MOA] as to allegations of excessive force and a Consent Decree as to PGPD's Canine Section.

On January 22, 2004, the DOJ filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court District of Maryland (Greenbelt) along with a joint motion to lodge the proposed Consent Decree. On March 11, 2004, the District Court (Judge Roger W. Titus) approved and entered the Consent Decree.

The MOA and the Consent decree required widespread reform to PGPD's use of canines and force. The agreements required the PGPD to implement the following reform measures:

• revisions to use of force policies and training protocol, including documentation and review of all use of force incidents

• creation of a board to review all firearm discharges

• changes to the department's receipt, investigation and review of citizen complaints

• implemention of a guard and bark methodology for canines, thereby restricting the use of biting

• monitoring and review of all canine deployments and biting incidents

• appointment of an independent monitor to oversee compliance with the MOA.

Eduardo Gonzalez and the Alexander Group Independent Monitor Team (AG-IMT) were selected to serve as the independent monitor.

Both agreements were set to expire three years after their effective dates, provided that the PGPD had been in substantial compliance with all provisions for at least two years.

On February 2, 2007, the parties filed a joint motion to terminate the consent decree.

On February 12, 2007, the Court granted the motion stating that PGPD had a) complied fully with the consent decree, and b) eliminated the last vestiges of unlawful behavior and had thus satisfied the decree.

Summary Authors

Dan Dalton (1/18/2007)

Andrew Steiger (2/11/2014)

People


Judge(s)

Titus, Roger W. (Maryland)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Acosta, R. Alexander (District of Columbia)

Ashcroft, John (District of Columbia)

Brown Cutlar, Shanetta Y. (District of Columbia)

Dibiagio, Thomas M. (Maryland)

Gonzalez, Gregory (District of Columbia)

Gregg, Tammie (District of Columbia)

Kim, Wan J. (District of Columbia)

Rosenstein, Rod J. (Maryland)

Schlozman, Bradley (District of Columbia)

Judge(s)

Titus, Roger W. (Maryland)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Acosta, R. Alexander (District of Columbia)

Ashcroft, John (District of Columbia)

Brown Cutlar, Shanetta Y. (District of Columbia)

Dibiagio, Thomas M. (Maryland)

Gonzalez, Gregory (District of Columbia)

Gregg, Tammie (District of Columbia)

Kim, Wan J. (District of Columbia)

Rosenstein, Rod J. (Maryland)

Schlozman, Bradley (District of Columbia)

Subramanian, Sandhya L. (District of Columbia)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Crawford, Mary C. (Maryland)

Whitacre, David (Maryland)

Expert/Monitor/Master

Johnson, Iain D. (Illinois)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

Docket [PACER]

Feb. 12, 2007 Docket
4

Memorandum of Agreement

Jan. 22, 2004 Settlement Agreement

Consent Decree

Jan. 22, 2004 Settlement Agreement

Justice Department Signs Agreement Governing Use of Canines and Force with Prince George's County

No Court

Jan. 22, 2004 Press Release
1

Complaint

Jan. 22, 2004 Complaint

Memorandum of Agreement - 3rd. Status Report

Dec. 22, 2004 Monitor/Expert/Receiver Report
15

Joint Motion and Memorandum for Termination of Consent Decree

Feb. 2, 2007 Pleading / Motion / Brief
17

Order for Termination of Consent Decree

Feb. 12, 2007 Order/Opinion

Resources

Title Description External URL

Implementing §14141 “Pattern or Practice” Reform: Evidence from Four Police Departments

Joshua M. Chanin

This paper takes as its subject a relatively new, but promising initiative to control police behavior through department-wide reform: a provision in the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act … Oct. 1, 2009 http://www.pmranet.org/conferences/OSU2009/papers/Chanin,%20Joshua%20M.%20Implementing%20Section%2014141%20Pattern%20or%20Practice%20Reform%20-%20Evidence%20from%20Four%20Police%20Departments.pdf

De-Policing

Stephen Rushin & Griffin Edwards

Critics have long claimed that when the law regulates police behavior it inadvertently reduces officer aggressiveness, thereby increasing crime. This hypothesis has taken on new significance in recen… March 1, 2017 https://scholarship.law.cornell.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=4723&context=clr

Docket

Last updated May 12, 2022, 8 p.m.

ECF Number Description Date Link
1

COMPLAINT against Prince George's County Police Department, Prince George's County, Maryland , filed by United States of America. (Attachments: # 1 civil cover sheet)(elt, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 01/22/2004)

Jan. 22, 2004
2

WAIVER OF SERVICE Returned Executed by United States of America. Prince George's County Police Department waiver sent on 1/22/2004, answer due 3/22/2004. (elt, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 01/22/2004)

Jan. 22, 2004
3

WAIVER OF SERVICE Returned Executed by United States of America. Prince George's County, Maryland waiver sent on 1/22/2004, answer due 3/22/2004. (elt, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 01/22/2004)

Jan. 22, 2004
4

Joint MOTION for Entry of Consent Decree and Supporting Memorandum by Prince George's County Police Department, Prince George's County, Maryland, United States of America. (Attachments: # 1 proposed order# 2 Consent Decree)(elt, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 01/22/2004)

Jan. 22, 2004
5

ORDER "HOLDING" a hearing before this Court for consideration of the Joint Motion for Entry of Consent Decree; "DIRECTING" that a notice of the hearing in the form attached as Exhibit A be published by counsel for the plaintiff as therein set forth; "DIRECTING" that a Spanish language translation of the notice of the hearing in the form attached hereto as Exhibit B shall be published as therein set forth; and "ORDERING" any interest person desiring to comment upon the proposed Consent Decree shall do so by submitting written comments as therein set forth Signed by Judge Roger W Titus on 2/3/04. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit A# 2 Exhibit B)(rank, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 02/03/2004)

Feb. 3, 2004

Status Conference held before Judge Roger W Titus (td, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 03/04/2004)

Feb. 12, 2004

Telephone Conference held before Judge Roger W Titus (td, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 03/16/2004)

March 8, 2004
6

AFFIDAVIT re 5 Order,, Affidavit of Gregory Gonzalez by United States of America. (Attachments: # 1 Copies of the Public Notice as Published in El Pregonero and the Washington Post and Additional Publishing Information from Each Newspaper)(Gonzalez, Gregory) (Entered: 03/10/2004)

March 10, 2004

Motion Hearing re 4 MOTION for Entry of Consent Decree and Supporting Memorandum filed by United States of America, Prince George's County, Maryland, Prince George's County Police Department held before Judge Roger W Titus. (Court Reporter Lisa Bankins) (hbm, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 03/11/2004)

March 11, 2004
8

AFFIDAVIT re 5 Order,,, 6 Affidavit, Amended Affidavit of Gregory Gonzalez by United States of America. (Attachments: # 1 Documents Supporting Publication of Notice)(Gonzalez, Gregory) (Entered: 03/16/2004)

March 16, 2004
9

STATUS REPORT Consent Decree 7/9/04 by Prince George's County, Maryland. (Whitacre, David) (Entered: 07/09/2004)

July 9, 2004
10

STATUS REPORT Consent Decree 1/7/05 by Prince George's County, Maryland. (Whitacre, David) (Entered: 01/10/2005)

Jan. 10, 2005
11

STATUS REPORT Consent Decree by Prince George's County, Maryland, Prince George's County Police Department. (Whitacre, David) (Entered: 07/13/2005)

July 13, 2005
12

STATUS REPORT PGPD 7th Consent Decree Status Report by Prince George's County, Maryland, Prince George's County Police Department. (Whitacre, David) (Entered: 01/23/2006)

Jan. 23, 2006
13

ORDER scheduling a concluding hearing for Consent Decree for 2/12/07 at 8:30 a.m. at the request of the parties. Signed by Judge Roger W Titus on 12/15/06. (rank, Deputy Clerk) Modified on 1/22/2007 (rank, Deputy Clerk). (Entered: 01/22/2007)

Jan. 19, 2007
14

Joint MOTION for Other Relief to Terminate Consent Decree by United States of America, Prince George's County, Maryland, Prince George's County Police Department. Responses due by 2/20/2007 (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit Notice of Lengthy Exhibits)(Crawford, Mary) Modified on 2/2/2007 (elt, Deputy Clerk). [Lengthy Exhibits A−D rec'd − FILED SEPARATELY) (Entered: 02/01/2007)

Feb. 1, 2007
15

Joint MOTION Second Amended Joint Motion to Terminate Consent Decree by United States of America, Prince George's County, Maryland, Prince George's County Police Department. Responses due by 2/20/2007 (Crawford, Mary) (Entered: 02/02/2007)

Feb. 2, 2007
16

PAPERLESS CORRESPONDENCE to counsel RESCHEDULING the Monday, February 12, 2007 8:30 a.m. hearing to begin at 9:00 a.m. instead. (Titus, Roger) (Entered: 02/08/2007)

Feb. 8, 2007

Motion Hearing held on 2/12/2007 re 15 Joint MOTION Second Amended Joint Motion to Terminate Consent Decree filed by Prince George's County, Maryland, Prince George's County Police Department, United States of America, 14 Joint MOTION for Other Relief to Terminate Consent Decree filed by Prince George's County, Maryland, Prince George's County Police Department, United States of America held before Judge Roger W Titus. (Court Reporter T. Dunlap) (hbm, Courtroom Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 02/12/2007)

Feb. 12, 2007
17

ORDER Terminating the Consent Degree 7 entered on 3/11/04 Signed by Judge Roger W Titus on 2/12/07. (rank, Deputy Clerk) (Entered: 02/12/2007)

Feb. 12, 2007

State / Territory: Maryland

Case Type(s):

Policing

Key Dates

Filing Date: Jan. 22, 2004

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

United States Department of Justice

Plaintiff Type(s):

U.S. Dept of Justice plaintiff

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Not sought

Defendants

Prince George's County Police Department (Prince George's), County

Case Details

Causes of Action:

34 U.S.C. § 12601 (previously 42 U.S.C. § 14141)

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Injunctive (or Injunctive-like) Relief

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Plaintiff

Nature of Relief:

Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement

Source of Relief:

Settlement

Form of Settlement:

Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree

Order Duration: 2004 - 2007

Issues

General:

Excessive force

Improper use of canines

Pepper/OC spray

Racial profiling

Discrimination-basis:

Race discrimination