Latest in a series of posts about the Bethlehem Police
This is the third post on an issue between the Bethlehem Police and a District Judge over the handling of a traffic stop of an Hispanic male that resulted in a marijuana charge and a subsequent November 14, 2019, conversation about it between the Judge and the arresting officer.
On November 20, the Bethlehem Police Department “lodged a complaint” with the Northampton County Court alleging that during that conversation the Judge accused the arresting officer of being a racist.
On November 29, the Judge described the events that led him to make a conscious choice to have a conversation with the arresting officer, but he denied accusing the officer of being a racist.
There follows a period of about three weeks during which we have no knowledge of what further, if anything, happens in regard to this issue.
Then, on December 20, the Judge makes a “formal complaint” to Mayor Donchez against Chief DiLuzio and the arresting officer. The Judge asks the Mayor to put a copy of the following letter “in their personnel files.”
The Judge cited the resistance of the arresting officer to the “constructive criticism” of his behavior during the incident and the “spurious complaint” filed by the Chief.
The Judge puts the City “on notice that the behavior of this officer, and the chief of police, is in danger of exposing the city to civil unrest among the Latino population, lack of cooperation with the police in their efforts to investigate crimes and protect the community, and, potentially, a civil rights lawsuit.”
The Judge references “yet another incident in which an Hispanic individual claimed to be harassed by the police [he does not claim that it was the same officer],” complained to the Chief about it, and never heard back from the Chief.
Have you been reading and reflecting?
Are you ready to trade some thoughts on what we know?