In the latest chapter in the ongoing saga of accusations hurled towards the Baltimore Police Department the woman who's job it was to discipline officers speaks out. In Baltimore's daily paper, we learn JoAnne C. Woodson-Branche is "prepared to pull back the curtain on the cesspool that exists within the Police Department's disciplinary oversight unit."
The statement was released through ace defense attorney Warren A. Brown. It went further to say; "the truth will not only vindicate attorney Branch [sic], but should lead to a major shake-up of the Baltimore City Police Department and those ultimately responsible for its operation."
It should be noted this statement comes right on the heels of the department settling a federal racial discrimination lawsuit for $2.4 million dollars.
An exclusive Investigative Voice interview of one of the officers victorious in the law suit reveals further the level of criminal activity that many local critics know to be all too common and routine within the Baltimore Police Department, there we read;
For Antoine Travers, an officer who joined the force in 1982 and was fired in 1997 for insubordination. the victory marks the start of a healing process of wounds that began when a white supervisor threw a trash can at him during roll call in the Northwest District in 1994.
“He knew I was documenting what was going on, they were violating people’s rights.”
One day, Travers said, the same lieutenant pulled up on the corner of West Belvedere and Beaufort avenues.
“There were twenty people standing on the corner and he started frisking one guy, asking him if he had any drugs,” Travers recalls.
“When they didn’t find any, a white sergeant went into an alley and found some drugs and they were going to arrest him,” he said. “But the guy broke away, and ran into a house; they chased him and shot him in the back.”
“I said to the lieutenant, 'Why did you do that? He didn’t do anything wrong.' ”
Because Travers was taking notes on what he believed was the racist behavior of the white officers, he soon found himself facing termination for insubordination after speaking out that day. In 1997, he was fired after three years of fighting for his job.
“I just felt like I had to fight. If they could shoot Joe Citizen for no reason, what could they do to a police officer?”