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NAPO strongly opposes the Eric Garner Excessive Use of Force Prevention Act (H.R. 4408), which would ban the use of “chokeholds” specifically stating “the application of any pressure to the throat or windpipe which may prevent or hinder breathing or reduce intake of air” would be a civil rights violation. Police agencies across the country already ban the use of “chokeholds” as a means of less-than lethal force. Instead, officers are trained in vascular neck restraints to control a non-compliant or actively resistant individual if de-escalation techniques do not work. H.R. 4408 also threatens to ban vascular neck restraints, which places officers and public safety at risk. Further, “chokeholds” are a vital tool when use of deadly force is justified; NAPO met with staff of Representatives Rodney Davis (R-IL) and Garret Graves (R-LA), who are leading the effort to move the Social Security Fairness Act (H.R. 141) forward in the House. This legislation, which would totally repeal both the Government Pension Offset (GPO) and the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP), continues to be a top priority for NAPO; House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal (D-MA) introduced the Public Servants Protection and Fairness Act (H.R. 4540), which would reform the WEP to reduce its impact on public employees’ Social Security benefits. It’s designed to more accurately account for years a public employee paid into Social Security versus the years paid into a public pension system; NAPO met with Senate Commerce Committee staff to promote the Kelsey Smith Act, which would require telecommunications companies to give law enforcement information about the location of a subscriber’s phone when there is an emergency involving the risk of death or serious physical injury. Twenty-four states have passed their own versions of the Kelsey Smith Act and NAPO is working to ensure Congress passes a federal minimum standard for telecommunications companies to respond to police emergency geolocation requests so every state has speedy access to this vital information in emergency situations; The Senate Appropriations Committee approved the FY 20 Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies (CJS) Appropriations Act. The bill continues strong funding for state and local law enforcement assistance programs, including NAPO’s priority grant programs.
All-new 2020 Police Interceptor Utility.
Photos courtesy of Ford Motor Company
The 2020 Ford Police Interceptor Utility has an enhanced steel X-shaped brace with a bigger, stronger ladder-like steel safety frame.
Excerpted from news media
Police Officers have one more line of defense against being injured by other drivers. Ford Motor Company has redesigned the body of the 2020 Police Interceptor Utility, which includes 160 pounds of extra steel to create a substructure that helps protect occupants in a rear-end collision.
Police Interceptor Utility is the only vehicle in the world that claims to provide 75 mph rear-impact protection. Testing was conducted at Ford’s crash barrier facility in Dearborn. The crash test rating exceeds the federal impact safety standard of 50 mph.
The protective frame addresses police safety concerns, especially during roadside traffic stops when getting hit from behind is not uncommon. “Officers are medically retired” because of being struck, Michigan State Police 1st Lt. Mike Shaw said in a Detroit Free Press article. “Officers have been killed in cars that are totaled or pinned between vehicles. When we’re looking at line-of-duty deaths, the majority aren’t gunfire-related, they are traffic crash-related.”
Michigan’s “Move Over” law requires drivers to move over one lane when passing stationary emergency vehicles with flashing lights. If drivers cannot switch lanes, they must reduce their speed 10 miles below the speed limit or face a $400 fine.
Since its launch in 2013, Ford affixed a steel X-shaped metal brace to the floor of the police SUV to meet the 75-mph test. In 2020, the design also includes a bigger, stronger ladder-like steel safety frame. The steel “X” transfers energy to both sides of the vehicle. “These pieces together are primary bracing we use to handle the absorption for the 75-mile per hour rear impact,” said Bill Gubing, Ford’s lead engineer on the vehicle, in the article. “Those are high-strength steel tubes. We put a layer of reinforcement between the floor pan and the seating surfaces. It holds both sides of the car together, so it can’t break apart. The structure stays intact and strong, allowing less crush.”
Current technology also protects the fuel tank and the hybrid battery. “We’re the only ones in the industry with this rear certification and bracing,” Gubing said in the article. “This increases the chance of officer survival.”
Engineers at Ford worked with law enforcement on design changes for officer safety. Factory-installed Police Perimeter Alert uses sensors to detect nearby movement to alert the driver of suspicious activity. When such motion is detected, the system automatically turns on the rear camera, sounds a chime, rolls up the windows, and locks the doors.
In head-to-head testing, the Explorer-based police vehicle will be the fastest cop car on the street, able to reach 150 mph, according to test data from the Michigan State Police.
The 2020 Police Interceptor Utility is the first pursuit-rated SUV available with a gasoline-electric hybrid powertrain. The gas or hybrid vehicles range from $37,000 to $41,000 but may be sold for less because police agencies require a competitive bidding process. Orders are being taken now and delivery is scheduled to start this summer.
The House GOP and Democrat leadership cut a deal to get the necessary votes on the Democratic side of the aisle to pass a $15.23 billion School Aid Fund (SAF) budget on a 91-18 vote. The Senate then passed the measure 21-16. It is expected that the Legislature will send Gov. Gretchen Whitmer the rest of the 15 FY 2020 spending bills as soon as Oct. 1 and she will exercise her line-item veto power to keep state government open beyond Oct. 1, but may scratch as many Republican spending priorities as possible to force them back to the negotiating table over money for road improvements and schools; An 11-bill local road funding package, HBs 4963 – 4973, was introduced and referred to the House Transportation Committee. The set of bills would allow counties to levy, after a vote of the people, their own registration fees or excise fuel taxes for roads; Gov. Whitmer offered three emergency rules banning all flavored vaping products from Michigan shelves. The orders came after Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun described youth vaping as a “public health emergency”; The House and Senate passed House Bill 4446, which limits how much a corporation or union can put toward fundraising events for a political action committee (PAC). The legislation is now headed to the Governor for her signature; Declaring that Michigan has one of the Midwest’s worst unemployment systems in terms of compensation and benefits, House Democrats have unveiled a 10-bill package of legislation which would restore the maximum weekly benefit rate indexing formula to 58 percent of the state average weekly wage and return the eligibility period from 20 to the standard 26 weeks. For more legislative news, click on the September 2019 Karoub Report below.
NAPO supports reintroducing Eric’s Law (S. 2264), which would require impaneling a new jury if a federal jury fails to unanimously recommend the death penalty. Under current law, the murder or attempted murder of a federal law enforcement officer is an aggravating factor in death penalty determinations in federal court. NAPO believes Eric’s Law is critical to ensuring justice is served, especially in cases where a law enforcement officer is murdered; NAPO opposes the Police Exercising Absolute Care with Everyone (PEACE) Act of 2019, which would change the current standard for use of force by federal officers. It also requires force be used only when necessary to prevent imminent death or serious bodily injury and a provision that any state or locality that does not have a policy similar to the legislation will not be eligible for any federal funding; On Sept. 4, NAPO met with the staff of Senate Law Enforcement Caucus Co-Chairs, Senators Roy Blunt (R-MO) and Chris Coons (D-DE), to discuss the Caucus’s support for moving the Kelsey Smith Act forward. It is our hope the Senate Commerce Committee will approve the bill as soon as possible. The Kelsey Smith Act would require telecommunications companies to give law enforcement information about the location of a subscriber’s phone when there is an emergency involving the risk of death or serious physical injury; On Sept. 10, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) adopted the “contract coverage” standard for determining whether a unionized employer’s unilateral change in a term or condition of employment violates the National Labor Relations Act. This makes it easier for employers to impose narrow changes to collectively bargained contracts without consulting unions, relaxing the “clear-and-unmistakable waiver” standard in place since 2007; NAPO is working with House Education and Labor Committee staff to move forward our Public Safety Employer-Employee Cooperation Act (H.R. 1154). Back on June 26, the House Education and Labor Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor, and Pensions held a hearing on “Standing with Public Servants: Protecting the Right to Organize”. The hearing focused on the Public Safety Employer-Employee Cooperation Act and the broader Public Service Freedom to Negotiate Act (H.R. 3463), which covers all public employees, including public safety. The Committee is now looking to move forward one or both bills and we are urging the Committee to act on our bill; Click on the links below for the full Sept. 16, 2019 Washington Report and the latest NAPO “Sponsor/Cosponsor” spreadsheet and “Legislative Positions” document.
– By Jennifer Gomori, POJ Editor
Nicholas Shoemaker made a good impression at Oakland Police Academy right from the start. His hard work and demeanor landed him a $1,000 Law Enforcement Education Program (LEEP) Award and a full-time Police Officer position with Royal Oak Police Department.
Photo courtesy of Oakland Police Academy
Oakland Police Academy Director David Ceci (left) presents Nicholas Shoemaker with his LEEP Award.
“He’ll be able to graduate in uniform,” said Oakland Police Academy Director David Ceci. “Royal Oak came in to recruit in Week 2 of the academy. I said, ‘That young man right there, that’s the one you want to look at.’ He’s that solid of an individual. He was just so respectful … and I got a good read from him right away. He has not disappointed from that first couple of weeks – he’s been solid the whole time.”
Royal Oak PD kept Shoemaker in mind and offered him the position at the end of academy. Shoemaker was one of 20 non-sponsored cadets in a class of 33 who graduated June 14.
The 23-year-old was chosen for the LEEP Award, which is given to a non-sponsored recruit based on peer evaluations, academic performance and overall skills. “He’s honestly a well-rounded person, but I think one of his strongest characteristics is he is a nice guy,” Ceci said. “He’s professional, he’s kind, he is smart, and he’s well spoken. People take a liking to him because of the way he carries himself.”
“I was really honored to get (the LEEP Award),” Shoemaker said. “I think we had a really good group of cadets and it was great to learn from all of them. I’m a humble guy and it makes me feel good that the instructors and director saw something in me. I put my all into everything I did at the academy.”
Shoemaker, who graduated Michigan State University with a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice, was also chosen for the MCOLES Outstanding Recruit Award.
“He is a hard worker. When things got tough, he never complained,” Ceci said. “He leads by example.”
The third annual Collin Rose 2K9 Memorial Run & 5K will be held at Wayne State’s Matthaei Athletic Complex on Oct. 12 as part of the University’s homecoming celebration. The event features a competitive 5K and dog friendly 2K run/walk.
The Officer Collin Rose Memorial Foundation hosts the annual event which honors the late Wayne State University Police Sergeant Collin Rose, who was a POLC member, and his two police dogs Clyde and Wolverine. Rose was killed on a street investigation in November 2016 and posthumously promoted to sergeant.
Foundation President Chris Powell said their organization is excited to bring the event to campus as part of homecoming festivities. The 5K starts at 11 a.m. followed by the dog-friendly 2K at 11:10 a.m. The Warriors play the Ferris State University Bulldogs that evening at 6 p.m.
“Collin graduated from Ferris State and attended their police academy before he was hired as a police officer at Wayne State,” Powell said. “He was a proud Ferris graduate, so that made it particularly exciting for us to host the race here and help kick off Homecoming activities. We’re hoping that a number of Ferris students and alumni will join us at the race and help celebrate Collin.”
All participants who pre-register by Sept. 20 are guaranteed a race bib and T-shirt.
For more information on the event, click on the link below. Click here to register for the run/walk.
– By Jennifer Gomori, POJ Editor
Pinckney Village Police Department has been more of a stepping stone for officers who have historically moved on to other departments. POLC Labor Rep. Duane Smith hopes to change that.
“It’s one of those places that people leave, so my job is to make it enticing enough that they want to stay,” Smith said.
The smaller paycheck that comes with working for a small department deters Village of Pinckney Patrol Officers from making a long-term commitment to the community.
“It’s kind of a short-term department. They’re very lowly paid for police,” Smith said.
Pinckney Village Patrol Officers voted to join the POLC at the end of April 2019 to change that. “Everybody was on board,” said Local Union President Chris Doolan.
Doolan said their unit chose POLC to represent them based on its positive reputation compared to some of the negative comments they’ve heard about POAM. “POLC represents Hamburg Township (Patrol and Command) and that’s really why we chose them,” she said. “We’re right next to them. We back them up. They back us up. The POLC Rep. got Hamburg a higher percentage than usual, which bumped their pay up to where it should be.”
Formerly represented by Michigan Association of Police (MAP), Pinckney Patrol’s contract expired June 30, 2019. Smith said he will focus on wage increases in contract negotiations. Pinckney Patrol received reasonable wage increases in their MAP contract, Smith said, “But they are so underpaid they need a big adjustment to get where they need to be.”
“They have full paid healthcare. They have a MERS pension. That’s pretty decent, except nobody’s ever retired from there before,” Smith said.
Doolan said they also have concerns about overtime compensation with their 12-hour shift work and a lack of bereavement pay. “There is some clause that says they don’t have to pay us overtime until 85-1/2 hours,” Doolan said. “If I work 13 hours, I am not getting overtime until I work beyond 13.5 hours that day. If we go in for traffic court or trial, you’re automatically guaranteed two hours of pay, but that two hours will only result in a half hour of overtime. This week I worked 17 hours yesterday and 14 hours this morning and I’m only getting 5-1/2 hours of overtime for working 31 hours in a 48-hour period.”
Doolan feels confident going into negotiations. “I’m impressed so far. The contact is important to me and (POLC Membership Services) Lloyd (Whetstone) and Duane have both been very responsive in reaching out to me,” she said.
Clinton Township Police Chief Fred Posavetz (center) with his sons, LEEP Award recipient Eric Posavetz (left) and Clinton Township Police Officer Ryan Posavetz.
– By Jennifer Gomori, POJ Editor
Macomb Police Academy graduate Eric Posavetz is following in his family’s footsteps. The Law Enforcement Education Program (LEEP) Award winner graduated alongside his brother, Ryan on May 20, 2019.
Ryan, 27, was hired by Clinton Township Police Department right after graduation. The brothers’ father, Fred Posavetz, is Clinton Township Police Chief. Their uncle, Jim Watson, is a retired Detroit Police Officer.
“It was always law enforcement that made me excited,” said Eric Posavetz. “I like the idea of keeping our community safe. Dad being a K9 handler and having the K9s at the house, I always loved the stories about protecting people. He’s always been my role model since I was a little kid. If I could be half the man that he was, I will have a very good career in law enforcement.”
LEEP Award winner Eric Posavetz (left) graduated Macomb Police Academy with his brother Ryan, who was hired by Clinton Township Police.
Posavetz, 25, also knew he didn’t want an 8-hour a day desk job and he would enjoy the variety that comes with law enforcement. “I don’t know how some people do the same things day in and day out. I like that every day is a different challenge,” he said. “I like the idea you can make a difference in your community.”
He earned a General Studies associates degree from Macomb Community College, which will become a Criminal Justice degree once he completes one final law enforcement course.
In late August, Posavetz got the word he would be hired full-time to work with his dad and brother at Clinton Township Police Department. The co-owner of Size Up Supplement, a Novi vitamin store, continues to run his business. “I kind of get the best of both worlds. I own my own store. At the same time, I really wanted to go into Criminal Justice,” Posavetz said. “I will be working at a department with 12-hour shifts. If it gets to the point where it’s too overwhelming, I can sell my share of the store.”
During the 11-hour days at the academy, he had someone else run the store. “I was getting a paycheck for managing, but when I started academy, I stopped working,” he said, adding a lot of his income was invested in the store. “It’s a really new store, so (the LEEP Award) definitely helped me out tremendously paying my bills.”
Posavetz was one of 24 original pre-service cadets in the class of 44. Macomb Academy Director Ray Macksoud was impressed with his work ethic, maturity, determination and character. “He kept up to the physical standards. He did well academically,” Macksoud said. “Everything he did, he put forward the effort while still maintaining his business and (training at) the academy.”
“When he’s talking to you, he’s serious and presents himself well,” Macksoud said. “I think the best trait I can say is he combined hard work with maturity and he was focused on a goal.”
Alleging that Attorney General Dana Nessel is trying to “usurp the lawmaking power of her office,” some members of the Michigan Legislature are asking to intervene in Enbridge’s lawsuit against her. A lawsuit was filed by Enbridge in June, seeking to enforce its Line 5 Tunnel agreement with the state; Nessel has filed suit against the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, joining more than a dozen states charging a new rule denying green cards to legal immigrants who use public assistance, or might use it, is unconstitutional; House Bills 4824 and 4825, if passed and signed into law, would create a sales tax holiday for parents and teachers who wouldn’t pay the 6 percent sales tax on back-to-school pens, glue sticks, clothing and computers under $1,000 on the third Saturday in August; In recent comments on WJR, Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey (R-Clarklake) said there will be no government shutdown because “there is no reason for it.” Gov. Gretchen Whitmer had suggested that a continuation budget be prepared in case budget negotiations go beyond Oct. 1–the start of the next fiscal year, but Shirkey said legislative leaders are making “good progress on the budget and some creative ways to address roads.”; and over a dozen Republicans have filed suit in U.S. District Court’s Western Division against Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson seeking to stop the state’s new citizen redistricting commission and invalidate Proposal 2. For more information on these and other legislative issues, please click on the August 2019 Karoub Report below.
From now until Oct. 6, 2019 National Law Enforcement Museum visitors – including law enforcement officers – will have a chance to put their crime-solving skills to the test. Those who solve the case have a chance to win $25,000.
“We’d love to see law enforcement participate – maybe even have police departments challenge each other to see who can crack the case first,” said Robyn Small, National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund (NLEOMF) Senior Director of Communications. “It’s a great team activity!”
Upon entering the Museum, visitors will be given a “case file” about the Queen of Diamonds, a criminal whose anonymous crew can only be identified by solving a series of puzzles embedded throughout the Museum’s exhibits. Using critical thinking and detective’s intuition, audiences will seek to uncover the true identities of the Queen and her crew. If a visitor succeeds in identifying all five members of the gang, they’ll be entered in a drawing for the chance to win $25,000, which will be awarded to one detective.
“Crimes (Un)Cased gives us an opportunity to introduce visitors to our Museum’s collection of artifacts in a unique and immersive way,” said NLEOMF CEO Lori Sharpe Day. “It’s a great activity to do with a team of friends or family members, and of course who wouldn’t want the chance to win $25,000?”
The Crimes (Un)Cased immersive experience was developed by the Museum’s marketing agency, U.Group, in conjunction with the Museum’s curatorial team. “It is part of bringing the Museum’s mission to life and enriching the relationship between law enforcement and the community through a fun and engaging experience,” said Chris Lester, Chief Creative Officer, U.Group. “Visitors become detectives themselves, and while immersed in the experience they’ll get to know the amazing stories associated with the artifacts in the Museum.”
Museum visitors are invited to play Crimes (Un)Cased free as a part of regular Museum admission. Once they have completed the activity, they enter their answers in a kiosk.
The Museum hopes to launch new cases for visitors to crack throughout 2020. For more details or to buy tickets to the Museum visit the new website for this immersive experience at www.CrimesUnCased.com.