Blue defend: These NYPD officers bought to maintain their jobs regardless of arrests

On a chilly December morning simply earlier than daybreak, NYPD Officer Candice Smith bought into her Dodge Caliber and careened eight miles in the wrong direction down a Long Island freeway, narrowly avoiding what may have simply been a tragedy.

Smith — who’d been an NYPD patrol officer for 3 years on the time of the 2011 incident — was so intoxicated, her blood alcohol degree was greater than twice the authorized restrict, police mentioned after her arrest. 

Five-and-a-half years later, Smith discovered herself again in handcuffs when she was busted for assault within the Bronx after which once more in June 2020 in Queens, when she was arrested for drunk driving a second time, public information present. 

Despite the three arrests, Smith, 37, remains to be a member of the NYPD and, most lately, spent her days watching surveillance cameras from Brooklyn public housing complexes — gathering her full wage, plus tens of hundreds in further compensation, information present.

“I’m an amazing police officer,” Smith, who made $99,516 final yr and is now within the strategy of leaving the division, instructed The Post when requested for touch upon her arrests exterior her Queens residence. 

“Bad decisions are bad decisions but I’m an amazing police officer.” 

Smith is considered one of not less than 16 law enforcement officials who have been arrested between 2017 and 2021 and allowed to maintain their jobs — even after an NYPD administrative trial decide discovered them responsible of the acts they have been accused of, a Post investigation has discovered. 

“Bad decisions are bad decisions but I’m an amazing police officer,” Candice Smith mentioned.

Aside from felony convictions, offenses that violate an officer’s oath of workplace or some home violence-related crimes — which all require computerized termination — disciplinary penalties are meted out and selected solely by the NYPD’s police commissioner, no matter what a division decide recommends or how extreme or minor the case is.

All of them have been accused of offenses that, if convicted, would have required computerized termination beneath state or federal legislation — together with assault, menacing, stalking, strangulation and aggravated harassment — however their circumstances all noticed favorable outcomes in felony courtroom.

It’s not clear why the officers have been allowed to maintain their positions beneath the NYPD’s arcane disciplinary system, which has lengthy been shrouded in secrecy, criticized for its lack of transparency and accused of being nepotistic.  

Breaking the legislation they’re imagined to uphold

The 16 officers are amongst 445 NYPD staff who have been arrested between 2017-2021 for crimes as banal as driving and not using a license to as severe as rape, baby sexual exploitation and homicide.

The group – employed by the NYPD in civilian and uniformed roles – make up a whopping 52% of the not less than 873 metropolis employees arrested over these years.

Nearly half of them, or 47%, have been nonetheless employed by the division as of June. Some have been even promoted after their arrests.

In comparability, the 2 companies with the very best variety of arrests in that very same interval after the NYPD, the FDNY and the Department of Correction, accounted for simply 14% and 12% of arrests, respectively. 

“Police crime occurs everywhere across the country in agencies big and small … These are systemic problems in policing.” 

Bowling Green State University professor Philip Stinson

At least 24 members of the NYPD have been arrested a number of occasions, some as many as four times, earlier than they have been lastly terminated, or resigned, from the division, information present. At least 5 of these with a number of arrests, like Smith, have been nonetheless employed by the division, together with two faculty crossing guards and a 911 operator. 

“These are individuals who are sworn to uphold the law and we expect better of our police officers and that’s why it’s a problem,” Bowling Green State University Professor Philip Stinson, who has been learning police crime nationwide since 2004, instructed The Post.

“Police crime occurs everywhere across the country in agencies big and small … These are systemic problems in policing.” 

Rich Rivera, the policing director for Penns Grove, New Jersey and an knowledgeable in officer misconduct, mentioned the circumstances recognized by The Post are simply those that bought reported. 

“There’s more out there than what’s being reported obviously because of the way law enforcement treat each other. A lot of times officers give each other breaks unnecessarily,” Rivera mentioned. 

“We actually know how to break the law very well. We enforce the law, we know what the parameters are and some people tread that line very closely and some people cross it.” 

The Post’s years-long investigation into officer arrests concerned police information, courtroom information, information experiences, interviews, law-enforcement sources, scholarly articles and different publicly obtainable paperwork. 

Second probabilities

Of the 16 officers who have been accused of fireable offenses and located responsible of them internally, however nonetheless saved their jobs, three pleaded responsible to the crimes in state courtroom — two to drunk driving and the opposite to disorderly conduct. The remainder of the circumstances had already been sealed when The Post inquired about them.

Among them was Sgt. Edel Sanchez – whose felony home violence case is sealed within the courtroom system — however who was discovered responsible of the conduct internally by an NYPD administrative trial decide.

The NYPD’s inner administrative critiques of cops who’ve been arrested occurs both on the identical time the case performs out in felony courtroom or after. The division determines whether or not the officer was convicted of or engaged in conduct thought-about a misdemeanor or felony crime beneath state or federal legislation. They apply a decrease normal of proof than the “beyond a reasonable doubt” normal in felony trials. 

Sanchez was charged with felony strangulation, assault and harassment for allegedly pinning down his spouse and choking her of their Queens residence in February 2018. Sanchez, who’d been with the division for nearly 14 years on the time, allegedly turned enraged when his spouse didn’t wake him up and produce him to mattress whereas he was asleep on the sofa “like a dog” after an evening of ingesting.  

During his division trial, Sanchez claimed his spouse falsely accused him. 

While it’s unclear how his felony case was resolved, an NYPD trial decide in April 2021 discovered Sanchez responsible of choking his spouse and decided her story to be credible, noting particularly the seen bruises she had on her physique after she reported the incident. 

Philip Case.
Officer Philip Case was arrested for menacing in 2019 after he allegedly pulled a gun on Kevin Skervin in a highway rage incident.

But as a substitute of termination, the division docked Sanchez’s pay 26 days, took away 30 trip days and positioned him on dismissal probation for a yr the place he could be fired if he broke another division guidelines.

He’s at present again to full responsibility along with his division firearm, figuring out of the transit bureau’s anti-terrorism unit. 

“I wish I could be able to talk about this and answer your questions but I can not,” Sanchez instructed The Post when requested in regards to the arrest. 

The cop who pleaded responsible to disorderly conduct, Officer Philip Case, was additionally allowed to maintain his job even after being discovered responsible of the conduct internally, as nicely.

Case, then 49, was busted for menacing in Sept. 2019 after he allegedly pulled a gun on Kevin Skervin in a Queens road-rage incident and threatened to “shoot and murder” him whereas pointing his weapon at him and one other passenger, Tomas Ortega Martinez. At the time, Case had been working a facet gig for the US Open event with out the division’s permission.

About a month-and-a-half after the incident, the NYPD discovered that Case had displayed a gun throughout an argument and was responsible of menacing, harassment, wrongful risk of pressure and off-duty employment with out permission. They docked his trip days and put him on dismissal probation. 

In courtroom, he pleaded responsible to disorderly conduct, a violation and never a criminal offense, which allowed the case to be sealed. 

These days, Case is again to full responsibility along with his division firearm on the 79th precinct in Brooklyn and denies that he pulled out his gun and threatened Skervin and Martinez. He is at present embroiled in a civil lawsuit introduced by the 2 males. 

Philip Case.
Case pleaded responsible to disorderly conduct and was allowed to maintain his job.
Gabriella Bass

“We had a little road dispute. I cursed him out, he cursed me out. He said I had a firearm. My gun was at home,” Case instructed The Post Tuesday, including he’s grateful to be again to full responsibility.

“There was no proof of what I did. They just went along with it.”

Numerous different circumstances present an identical pattern:

  • Police Officer Jeffrey Augustin was busted for allegedly choking his spouse and threatening to kill her after getting right into a combat over cash in Nov. 2017 on Staten Island. The case is sealed within the courtroom system however almost two years later, an inner administrative evaluation discovered he had assaulted somebody twice and made a harassing telephone name. He was suspended with out pay for 13 days, ordered to bear counseling and positioned on dismissal probation for a yr. These days, he’s again to full responsibility, figuring out of the 84th precinct. He didn’t return a request for remark. 
  • Police Officer Victor Cruz was busted for assault for allegedly attacking his girlfriend in April 2018 in Manhattan. The case is sealed however internally, he was discovered responsible of assault and he was ordered to bear counseling, positioned on dismissal probation and was docked numerous suspension days. These days, he’s again to full responsibility, figuring out of the forty fourth precinct. He didn’t return a request for remark. 
  • Police Officer Anthony Amirally was arrested in Dec. 2018 in The Bronx for allegedly choking his mom throughout a combat on the household’s residence. The fees have been later dropped after the mother refused to cooperate and the case is now sealed however an inner administrative evaluation discovered he was responsible of assault. He was ordered to bear counseling, positioned on dismissal probation for 12 months and docked 32 suspension days. These days, he’s again to full responsibility, figuring out of the twenty eighth precinct. He didn’t return a request for remark. 
  • Det. Aliskender Raji was arrested for assault and criminal mischief in Feb. 2020 in Queens for allegedly kicking his spouse and smashing her cellular phone. The case was sealed however an inner administrative evaluation discovered he was responsible of assault and felony mischief and he was ordered to bear counseling, positioned on dismissal probation for 12 months and docked 14 suspension days. These days, he’s again to full responsibility, figuring out of the division’s felony intelligence part. He didn’t return a request for remark. 
  • Police Officer Chon Huang was arrested for assault in May 2019 in Brooklyn for allegedly punching an e-bike driver who nearly clipped his daughter. The case is sealed however internally, he was discovered responsible of assault and he was positioned on dismissal probation, and docked 30 suspension days. These days, he’s again to full responsibility, figuring out of Brooklyn’s 94th precinct. He declined remark.

Low conviction charges, sweetheart offers

Of the 908 complete arrests involving metropolis staff tracked by The Post between 2017 and 2021, simply 21 are nonetheless pending within the courtroom system. There is little data obtainable in regards to the circumstances that have been adjudicated, as a result of the overwhelming majority of them are sealed.

Cases are sealed when the cost is dismissed, the district lawyer declined to prosecute or the defendant pled to a violation comparable to disorderly conduct, which isn’t a criminal offense. It can even occur when the case ends with an adjournment in contemplation of dismissal (ACD), the place the decide orders that the fees be wiped so long as the accused stays out of hassle for a sure time interval, normally six to 12 months. 

The bulk of the circumstances in opposition to NYPD workers concerned violent and home violence-related offenses which are grounds for computerized termination, together with assault, harassment, aggravated harassment, menacing and strangulation. 

Under New York state legislation, any officer that’s criminally convicted of a felony, or a misdemeanor that violates their oath of workplace – comparable to perjury, official misconduct, bribery, menacing, stalking, assault or aggravated harassment – is robotically terminated however nonetheless could also be entitled to their pension. 

Any legislation enforcement officer accused of most home violence offenses robotically faces termination as a result of, beneath federal legislation, anybody convicted of such a criminal offense can’t have a firearm, which might preclude them from police work. 

However, the final chance that NYPD staff will see a conviction on such offenses are slim. Between 2017 and 2021, circumstances involving NYPD staff led to convictions about 26% of the time, primarily for DWI offenses — in comparison with 38% of most of the people who have been prosecuted within the 5 boroughs throughout that very same time interval. 

Other metropolis employees, like lecturers and firefighters, have been additionally extra seemingly than their NYPD counterparts to see convictions within the courtroom system, with a median of 31% of circumstances leading to convictions.

The NYPD’s disciplinary matrix states cops may nonetheless be penalized internally or fired after an arrest, no matter what occurs in courtroom.

But a 2016 study on police crime printed by Stinson discovered cops are six occasions extra more likely to lose their jobs in violence-related circumstances if the officer is finally convicted in felony courtroom. 

“Prosecutors, to be able to do their daily bread and butter work, they rely on police officers showing up in court and cooperating with them on prosecutions, the run of the mill criminal cases, just the daily grind of prosecutors,” mentioned Stinson, who is taken into account the main knowledgeable on police crime.

“I think that in some instances, prosecutors are very reluctant in any way to piss off the police … so in cases that are not getting a lot of media attention especially, I think it’s highly likely that police officers are more likely to get favorable outcomes than other defendants would in their criminal cases.” 

I had the proof … it was nonetheless not sufficient

When Melissa’s boyfriend NYPD Police Officer Christopher Valencia strangled her, held her prisoner, busted her lip and bit her so arduous on her leg, it drew blood, she was assured the case would achieve courtroom. 

After all, she was a police officer herself and he or she believed she had the proof essential to deliver a case – pictures of her accidents, textual content messages of him admitting to the crimes and witnesses who noticed components of the assaults.

“As a cop I knew I had the evidence that I would need and apparently it was still not enough,” Melissa, now 27, instructed The Post in a latest interview, asking that she solely be recognized by her first identify.

The Post reviewed pictures of Melissa’s accidents and textual content messages from Valencia admitting to the assaults.

Christopher Valencia.
Officer Christopher Valencia strangled his girlfriend, held her hostage, and bit her.

When Melissa reported the assaults in Jan. 2021, which occurred on two separate events in Queens and in Suffolk County, Long Island a few yr prior, prosecutors on the Queens County District Attorney’s Public Corruption Bureau have been reluctant to strive the case, she alleged. 

The assistant district lawyer assigned to the case requested her, “Well did you ask for that?” and instructed her that to an outsider, her accidents “just look like rough sex,” Melissa alleged. 

“She’s like, ‘You’re a cop you get it’ and I’m like, ‘I know I’m a cop but no I didn’t ask for him to do this to me,’” Melissa recalled. 

“They mentioned that if he bought charged with [a domestic violence related offense] he would lose his job. I mentioned ‘he shouldn’t have the job’ …  she’s like, ‘Well I can’t simply be OK with that as a result of he’s a cop.’

“Every time I left there I was just hysterical crying. They made me feel like I was doing the wrong thing and I felt they were just trying to protect him because he was a police officer … they didn’t want more poor attention on the police department.” 

Melissa was ready to go to trial and had quite a few trial prep dates with prosecutors — however quickly realized they determined to supply Valencia an ACD after he accomplished 26 home violence/anger administration therapy classes, which might seal the case after a yr.

She instructed them she didn’t agree with the choice and nonetheless needed to maneuver forward with trial, however was instructed the matter was settled.

“Everything was there, I had all the evidence, I knew what he did wasn’t right and I knew I was prepared and for them to just make a deal … I just felt so defeated,” mentioned Melissa, who has since left the NYPD and moved to North Carolina. 

“It scares me that one day he’ll have a gun again and will be interacting with the public.” 

Valencia remains to be employed by the NYPD on modified responsibility almost two years after his arrest. It is unclear if there are any inner disciplinary proceedings in opposition to Valencia at present underway. He didn’t return a request for remark. 

In response, a spokesperson for the Queens County District Attorney’s Office mentioned “the disposition was appropriate.” 

“With these facts and two parties who were not police officers, the outcome would have been exactly the same,” the spokesperson mentioned. “When the 2019 crime was reported by the complainant [a year and a half] later, the defendant was charged in accordance with the facts of the case.”  

The workplace mentioned the accidents — together with bitemarks left completely etched on Melissa’s legs — didn’t meet the usual for felony assault.

Beyond the 16 officers discovered responsible internally but nonetheless employed, Valencia is considered one of 31 cops recognized by The Post who’ve saved their jobs after they have been accused of fireable offenses. But he, just like the others, noticed favorable outcomes within the courtroom system. Any inner disciplinary measures in opposition to them are both unclear or underway. 

Christopher Valencia.
Valencia remains to be employed by the NYPD on modified responsibility almost two years after his arrest.

Among them can also be Police Officer Ernie Moran, who confronted computerized termination after he was charged with aggravated harassment and stalking on July 8, 2020 for sending his ex-girlfriend a number of textual content messages stating “he was outside her house” and “had his firearm and would kill whoever she was with.” 

Moran, then 34, had been dumped three months prior however continued to name his ex “multiple times on a daily basis,” confirmed up at her home after she requested him to cease contacting her and as soon as bought right into a combat with a person he thought she was courting. 

The sufferer instructed cops she was afraid for her security as a result of Moran had allegedly bodily abused her all through their relationship. 

In Dec. 2021, Moran pleaded to fourth-degree felony mischief, which isn’t an oath-violating offense, and was sentenced to $22,000 in restitution, courtroom information present. 

Nearly a yr after his conviction, he’s nonetheless employed with the NYPD, engaged on modified responsibility out of a Bronx courthouse and gathering tens of hundreds of {dollars} in additional time and additional compensation. 

It is unclear if there are any inner disciplinary proceedings in opposition to Moran at present underway. He didn’t return a request for remark. 

Ernie Moran.
Officer Ernie Moran was charged with aggravated harassment and stalking on July 8, 2020.

“Officers who are convicted, even officers convicted of misdemeanors, I would argue shouldn’t be police officers,” mentioned Stinson. 

“They violated the public trust and we have to work hard to maintain police accountability but also police legitimacy and if the citizenry doesn’t view their police officers as legitimate because of officers who were being convicted of misdemeanors are still working it could lead to erosion in the trust in police.” 

Convoluted, nepotistic disciplinary system

In the case of Smith, the disposition of her 2011 arrest is unclear and the 2017 bust on assault fees is sealed. Following her June 2020 arrest for drunk driving, she pleaded responsible to driving whereas impaired and her license was suspended for 90 days. 

She was disciplined internally over her 2017 bust for assault the place she was discovered responsible of an off-duty bodily altercation and positioned on dismissal probation for 12 months, ordered to bear breath testing and docked 30 days pay. 

Even although Smith’s third arrest was greater than two years in the past, she was solely suspended with out pay initially of November, and is now “currently separating from the department,” an NYPD spokesperson claimed this week. 

Smith’s division trial wrapped up in July, the spokesperson mentioned. She’d been on modified responsibility and gathering her paycheck as lately as November 1.

For years, the NYPD’s disciplinary course of was criticized for a myriad of reasons and shrouded in secrecy, prompting an overhaul of the system in Jan. 2021 that sought to enhance “fairness and efficacy” and scale back inconsistencies and oversights.

Dr. Keith Taylor, a former NYPD Internal Affairs supervisor who’s now an Adjunct Assistant Professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, mentioned the division had “historic issues with certain groups getting disparate treatment” over others when it got here to self-discipline and famous that nepotism had lengthy performed a job. 

In one case recognized by The Post, Lt. Marykate Mullan was assigned to the NYPD’s Internal Affairs Squad and had been with the division for almost 20 years when she was arrested for drunk driving after stepping into an accident in March 2017 in Queens. 

She pleaded responsible to driving whereas impaired and an inner administrative evaluation additionally discovered she had pushed drunk. She was positioned on dismissal probation, ordered to bear counseling, docked 20 trip days and suspended with out pay for 23 days, amongst different penalties. 

Despite the conviction, Mullan was not demoted or terminated and as a substitute, was given a discretionary “special assignment” promotion about three years later.

The promotion got here with a wage enhance, which bumped her complete pay with additional time from $159,676 in 2019 to $218,362 in 2020 and $226,050 in 2021 till she left the division the next yr. She declined remark.

Det. Michael Gries was busted for drunken driving in Brooklyn in Oct. 2017, a few yr and a half after he’d been promoted to the rank, and was convicted of the offense and later discovered responsible of it internally as nicely. 

He was positioned on dismissal probation, ordered to bear counseling and docked 10 trip days, amongst different penalties. 

Despite the conviction, he was by no means demoted from his function and as a substitute, was promoted to a second-grade detective someday between 2021 and 2022. He didn’t return a request for remark. 

“There are certain groups that may have more connections … they have people that they can reach out to both in the executive level as well as the political class who can help them with these [cases],” defined Taylor. 

“Some other groups may not have access to that kind of power to intercede in the disciplinary process.” 

In comparability, Det. John Glynn was demoted after his drunk driving bust in 2019. 

Glynn, whose Jan. 2019 case is sealed within the courtroom system, was demoted to the rank of police officer in Feb. 2020 after a yr and a half as a detective. He didn’t remark when reached by The Post.

“He may not have had any friends in high places,” Taylor mentioned. 

While every officer arrest is dealt with on a case-by-case foundation internally, Taylor mentioned such cases of disparate therapy are one of many the explanation why the disciplinary matrix was reformed in 2021. 

The outcomes of the reform are a convoluted labyrinth of “presumptive penalties,” “mitigated” and “aggravated” penalties for a variety of offenses, each felony and inner, that just about at all times come right down to the police commissioner’s discretion.

Officers who deny the fees in opposition to them can contest them in an inner trial however the course of can take years and within the meantime, they’re allowed to stay on modified responsibility and gather their full salaries.

Lt. Marykate Mullan.
Lt. Marykate Mullan was not demoted or terminated after pleading responsible to drunk driving in 2017.
Steve White

Despite the reforms, connections inside the police division nonetheless seem to prevail. 

Det. Nalik Zeigler, whose dad and mom have been two NYPD bigwigs – former NYPD Deputy Commissioner of Equal Employment Opportunity Neldra Zeigler and former Chief of Community Affairs Douglas Zeigler – was busted for drunk driving and allegedly crashing into parked automobiles in Oct. 2018 in Manhattan simply weeks after his doubtful promotion to second-grade detective seven years into his NYPD profession.

He pleaded responsible to drunk driving internally and was positioned on dismissal probation, amongst different penalties — nevertheless it took three years for the case to maneuver by the courts.

By then, the disciplinary reforms have been already in place and beneath the present requirements, drunk driving with aggravating components, comparable to crashing into automobiles and inflicting property injury, may result in termination, or on the very least a demotion. 

Instead, greater than a yr after Zeigler was discovered responsible in felony courtroom of drunk driving, he’s but to be demoted or face another recognized inner self-discipline and stays on the division’s comfortable Intelligence Bureau.

He didn’t remark when reached by The Post. 

Rotten to the core

To perceive why NYPD staff usually tend to be arrested than their fellow metropolis employees, Dr. Thomas Coghlan mentioned the issue lies inside the division internally. 

The scientific psychologist, who’s a retired NYPD detective and a therapist for members of legislation enforcement, first responders and their households, pointed to the excessive charge of civilian arrests inside the division as proof of a bigger, inner breakdown. 

“The concern is with the department as an entity, as an employer, right? Why does this employer represent this disproportionate piece of the data?” mentioned Coghlan, who can also be an adjunct professor of forensic psychology at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. 

“The department is a toxic workplace, it’s a toxic cesspool that when you sit in it long enough, you become toxic.” 

Coghlan mentioned the inner stress that comes from working for the NYPD, each in civilian and uniformed roles, results in a “whirlwind of maladaptive coping mechanisms” and regarding behaviors that “leads us down the road to arrests.” 

A whole lot of that stress comes from the issues highlighted in a Post exposé in regards to the the explanation why officers are leaving the division in droves, together with pressured additional time, poor work life steadiness and the NYPD’s historical past of nepotism.

“Punitive paradigms, draconian policies and autocratic hierarchical system, nepotistic behavior … we know that the agency created stressors, the organizational stressors, that is where the stress in police work really exists,” mentioned Coghlan, citing analysis. 

When you couple organizational stressors with the final stress and trauma of being a police officer, occupational stressors like mandated additional time and canceled days off, and add in household and social stressors, “it is like gasoline on a fire,” mentioned Coghlan. 

“You become physically and mentally exhausted, you develop a heightened sense of pessimism and cynicism, low sense of fulfillment, low sense of efficacy within your job roles,” defined Coghlan. 

“Then that behavior comes home with you, your mood decompensates, you develop a more apathetic mood to things, you develop a more indifferent mood and that permeates throughout your personality … Operating in that type of structure long enough causes a tremendous amount of discord in people’s personal lives.”

While getting arrested can have a major affect on an officer’s credibility, on the finish of the day, cops are “human beings” with “human behaviors” who’re “absolutely” able to rehabilitation, argued Rivera. 

“There’s definitely a road to redemption,” mentioned Rivera. 

“It might be a humbling experience for the individual, you can absolutely rehabilitate an officer. What becomes problematic is if the officer has no credibility or their truthfulness has been brought to question. That you can’t come back from.” 

Samantha Medina.
Officer Samantha Medina was busted for DWI and leaving the scene of an accident that induced accidents in 2018.
Steven Hirsch

In response to The Post’s investigation, an NYPD spokesperson mentioned worker arrests are a “severe” concern to the division as a result of “our members are expected to exhibit higher standards than the general public given their profession and the duties they perform each day.”

“When a member is arrested, not only do they face the potential consequences of the criminal justice system, but they are subject to additional, and fervent, scrutiny from our internal investigations and by our disciplinary system, where appropriate,” the spokesperson mentioned. 

“Most of the events referenced [by The Post] occurred before the institution of the NYPD Disciplinary Matrix, which took effect in January 2021, and was the product of a collaborative effort with the CCRB and other interested stakeholders to ensure consistency in our process and that appropriate penalties are meted out – including termination, when necessary. The Matrix is not a static document and can be amended to address concerns and patterns seen within the disciplinary process.”

Additional reporting by Desheania Andrews, Reuven Fenton and Kevin Sheehan

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