Monday, November 22, 2010

East Haven , CT (former) Police Chief on FOI Hot Seat Today

Records On Ethnic Profiling
And Police Abuse
Remain Suppressed


Tafari Lumumba (720-335-4033)
Manuel Giner (480-227-7348)
Legal Interns,
Jerome N. Frank Legal Services Organization

East Haven Police Chief
Subpoenaed To Testify
Before Freedom of Information Commission

Sunday, November 21, 2010: New Haven, Conn.:
Former East Haven Police Chief Leonard Gallo is under subpoena to testify before the Connecticut Freedom of Information Commission (FOIC) at a Monday morning hearing regarding the East Haven Police Department’s (EHPD) failure to comply with a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request.

The request -- filed March 11, 2010 by St. Rose of Lima Church (St. Rose) and Apostle Immigrant Services (AIS) -- sought numerous documents, including those related to how the department investigates claims of ethnic profiling and police abuse.

Eight months later, the police department has failed to provide many documents requested in the original March 11 request.

Gallo is expected to testify about his knowledge of documents pertaining to the ongoing United States Department of Justice investigation into the EHPD along with other items relevant to the March 11 request. St. Rose and AIS served Gallo with a subpoena last week. Lieutenant Joseph Slane, who handles EHPD records, is also under subpoena to testify and is expected to explain why the department has still failed to fully comply with the request.

The Commission has the statutory power both to compel the East Haven Police Department to produce information and to impose civil penalties for noncompliance.

The hearing will be the second time this year that EHPD personnel have appeared before the Commission for non-compliance with FOIA requests. In an April 28, 2010 order, the Commission found that the EHPD had violated the Freedom of Information Act by failing to disclose documents regarding use of tasers and pepper spray and by failing to conduct a diligent search for the disciplinary files of a number of individual East Haven police officers. St. Rose and AIS are represented in this matter by the Jerome N. Frank Legal Services Organization at Yale Law School.

The hearing will be held at 11:00am in the FOIC’s Hearing Room A, located at 18-20 Trinity Street in Hartford. The hearing is open to the public.

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