Police: Union stops NJ town’s attempt to make cops say if they attended Capitol riot

The union concluded the "investigation was done for solely political purposes and was not based on fact”

By Chris Sheldon

NEPTUNE TOWNSHIP, N.J. — The state’s second-largest police union has stopped Neptune Township from demanding that its officers inform the town whether or not they participated in the Jan. 6 siege on the U.S. Capitol, the union announced Tuesday in a statement.

The Fraternal Order of Police’s- New Jersey Labor Council said it resolved a grievance on behalf of the members of Neptune Superior Officers Association Lodge 19, and “preserved its members’ Constitutional and contractual rights,” according to the statement.

The township “demanded” on Jan. 20 that its officers identify if they participated in the incident that left five people dead including Capitol police officer and New Jersey native Brian D. Sicknick, and that they would face discipline if they refused to answer, the union said.

“Notably, there was absolutely no indication, complaint, or information to suggest that any Neptune Superior Officer was in any way involved in the January 6 events in Washington, D.C.” the union said. “The FOP concluded that this investigation was done for solely political purposes and was not based on fact or credible information.”

The union said it filed a grievance which challenged the legality of the notice and the “requirement to compel our members to answer” and alleged violations of its members’ rights under the collective negotiations’ agreement with the town as well as their Fifth and Sixth Amendment rights.

The town reviewed the grievance, sustained it and the Neptune Township Mayor and Council reversed their position and rescinded the notice, the union said.

The town’s mayor, deputy mayor, the council’s liaison to the police as well as a police department public information officer did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment Wednesday evening.

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[READ: Public employee speech and consequence of unlawful action]

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McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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