Posts tagged "Patrolmen’s"

City of Boston v. Boston Police Patrolmen’s Association (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-118-17)

NOTICE:  All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.  If you find a typographical error or other formal error, please notify the Reporter of Decisions, Supreme Judicial Court, John Adams Courthouse, 1 Pemberton Square, Suite 2500, Boston, MA, 02108-1750; (617) 557-1030;   SJC-12077   CITY OF BOSTON  vs.  BOSTON POLICE PATROLMEN’S ASSOCIATION.       Suffolk.     December 5, 2016. – July 12, 2017.   Present:  Gants, C.J., Lenk, Hines, Gaziano, Lowy, & Budd, JJ.     Arbitration, Confirmation of award, Authority of arbitrator.  Municipal Corporations, Police.  Police, Discharge.  Public Employment, Police, Termination.  Public Policy.       Civil action commenced in the Superior Court Department on July 22, 2013.   The case was heard by Dennis J. Curran, J.   The Supreme Judicial Court granted an application for direct appellate review.     Kay H. Hodge (Geoffrey R. Bok also present) for the plaintiff. Alan H. Shapiro (John M. Becker also present) for the defendant.     HINES, J.  This is an appeal from a judgment of the Superior Court confirming an arbitrator’s award reinstating a Boston police officer terminated for using a choke hold in arresting an unarmed suspect for disorderly conduct and making false statements in the ensuing departmental investigation.  The arbitrator found that the officer, David Williams, had applied a choke hold, but that the choke hold had not actually choked the citizen, that the force was reasonable in the circumstances, and that the officer’s subsequent characterization of events was thus truthful.  Accordingly, the arbitrator ruled that the city of Boston (city) lacked just cause to terminate Williams, and ordered his reinstatement with back pay. In July, 2013, the city filed a complaint in the Superior Court to vacate the arbitrator’s award.  The court dismissed the complaint in June, 2015, and the city appealed.  We granted the city’s application for direct appellate review.  Because the award neither exceeds the arbitrator’s authority nor violates public policy, and because we are not free to vacate it where no underlying misconduct was found, we affirm. Background.  a.  Facts.  On January 18, 2012, the city discharged Williams based on specifications arising from a disorderly conduct arrest on March 16, 2009.  The specifications were use of excessive force, in violation of Boston police department rule 304 on use of nonlethal force, and untruthfulness in the subsequent investigation, in violation of rule 102, § 23, on truthfulness.  Chosen by mutual agreement of the city and the Boston Police Patrolmen’s Association (union) pursuant to a collective bargaining agreement (CBA), an arbitrator held three days of hearings, concluded that the city had proved neither charge, and ordered Williams’s reinstatement […]


Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - July 13, 2017 at 12:21 am

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