New Jersey Supreme Court Upholds Disclosing Names of Officers Guilty of Major Discipline

New Jersey Supreme Court Upholds Disclosing Names of Officers Guilty of Major Discipline
NJ POLICE DEPARTMENTS HAVE UNTIL MONDAY, AUGUST 9, 2021 TO MAKE AVAILABLE THE NAMES OF THE OFFICERS WHO HAVE BEEN FOUND GUILTY OF MAJOR DISCIPLINE, INCLUDING OFFENSES SUCH AS GIVING FALSE TESTIMONY OR DRINKING ON THE JOB.
 
This edict was upheld by the New Jersey State Supreme Court which reviewed the directive issued by the New Jersey State Attorney General, Gurbir Grewal, mandating the disclosures.
 
By August 9, all New Jersey Police Departments must identify any officer who has been terminated, demoted, or suspended for more than 5 days (major discipline) retroactive back to June 15, 2020. More detailed guidance with regard to such disclosure can be obtained from the New Jersey State Attorney General's Office.
 
As referenced above, departments are only to include names of officers who have received "major discipline". The disclosure of names are not to include Officers who have been subjected to "minor discipline". The department should consult with their legal counsel in making such distinctions and to ensure appropriate compliance without violating the privacy rights of public employees.
 
The recent New Jersey State Supreme Court decision, which was unanimous confirmed that the Attorney General had the authority to identify disciplined Officers while they did allow for Officers to challenge such disclosures with compelling circumstances.
 
The initial disclosures must include any Officer disciplined from June 15 through December 31 of 2020.