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by Peter Moskos

December 11, 2015

Longo testifies it's OK to violate the rules, if you can defend your actions

I don't personally remember Timothy Longo, but I do remember his name. Was he in the E&T chain of command in 2000?

Londo testified in Porter's trial today. Longo said that the van driver, Goodson:
was ultimately responsible for Gray's care, and that Porter had notified a supervisor that Gray needed help. He said Goodson and the supervisor, Sgt. Alicia D. White — not Porter — had the responsibility to take further action.

"I believe [Porter's] actions were objectively reasonable under the circumstances he was confronted with."
Well said.

But what is more interesting to me is that Longo said officers can violate general orders, "with the understanding that they could face administrative scrutiny." Of course that is exactly the way the police world works, but I've never heard it expressed exactly that way: go ahead and violate the rules; just be able to defend you actions. Rules aren't laws.

Of course the average cop doesn't trust their boss enough to do the right thing. But it's still nice to hear such standards articulated by Longo.

Update: "Reynolds says general orders are acceptably violated all the time. Officers asked to use common sense and good judgment"

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