Tuesday, April 1, 2008

17 Sue the Baltimore Police Dept... The Set B Squad UNDER FIRE!

If you are from the Baltimore area (maybe other towns also) you have seen the plain clothed police officers driving unmarked vehicles with police lights and sirens in them. Well a suit has been filed against the Baltimore Police Department and specifically the Set B Squad, ( a seperate task force created to keep an eye on high crime areas). Here is a little experpt from there:

Seventeen plaintiffs in a federal civil rights lawsuit filed Friday claim they were the victims of a special plainclothes unit of the Baltimore Police Department that repeatedly made arrests without good cause, executed illegal searches and seizures of the detainees’ homes and filed charges that did not result in convictions.

The 60-page lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court in Baltimore, alleges members of an East Side Special Enforcement Team, the SET ‘B’ squad, carried out their mission to “respond to emerging violent crime problems” without regard to constitutional constraints and without objection from their superiors.

The suit also accuses the officers of filing false reports to justify unwarranted and fruitless searches.

Seeking unspecified compensatory and punitive damages for violations of the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments and for malicious prosecution, the lawsuit names several officers who allegedly took part in the incidents; then-Police Commissioner Leonard D. Hamm, who created the two 30-member special enforcement teams in July 2005; the police department and the mayor and City Council.

William Harris, the sergeant in charge of the unit, had previously been the subject of an internal departmental investigation and “at least two” civil suits, and should not have been given supervisory authority, according to the suit.

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