CONTACT: Meredith Curtis, ACLU of Maryland, 410-889-8555; firstname.lastname@example.org
PRINCESS ANNE - On Monday, May 11, the Maryland Court of Appeals will hear argument in the police accountability case of Teleta Dashiell, a Somerset County woman who filed a citizen complaint against a Maryland State Police (MSP) Sergeant who was recorded denigrating her with a racial slur. Nearly five years ago, Dashiell, who is represented by the American Civil Liberties Union of Maryland, requested records from the MSP about how it handled her complaint. But MSP has taken the extreme position that all records pertaining to her complaint must be kept secret, including her own statement to police, claiming that such records are "personnel" records or else shielded from public view by the Law Enforcement Officers' Bill of Rights. MSP has refused to even name the records it is withholding from Dashiell, arguing that the law does not recognize the right of a complainant like Dashiell to information about her own police misconduct complaint.
The Maryland high court hearing in Dashiell v. MSP comes on the heels of the death in police custody of Freddie Gray in Baltimore. In the aftermath of Gray's death, as well as the recent deaths of black people at the hands of police in Ferguson, Missouri, Staten Island, New York, and elsewhere, Maryland and the nation have been awakening to the cry for justice coming from communities whose trust in law enforcement has been shattered by police disrespect, discrimination and misconduct.. The case of Teleta Dashiell could play a crucial role in the effort to win increased police accountability when law enforcement officials act abusively abusively toward the people they are sworn to protect and serve.
WHAT: Court of Appeals hearing on Dashiell v. Maryland State Police.
WHEN: Monday, May 11 at 9:30 a.m.
WHERE: Court of Appeals Building, CoA Courtroom, 361 Rowe Blvd, Annapolis, MD.