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Statement from the Police Complaints Board Regarding Federal Police in the District of Columbia

Saturday, June 6, 2020

The District of Columbia Police Complaints Board (PCB), governing body of the Office of Police Complaints (OPC), does not agree with the presence of federal police in Washington, D.C. monitoring people protesting the death of George Floyd.

The presence of federal police is adding to the frustration of those peacefully protesting for police reform and racial equality. We believe the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) is well equipped to handle First Amendment assemblies in the District of Columbia. And OPC has the statutory authority to monitor MPD’s response to First Amendment Assemblies to ensure that everyone is allowed to exercise their First Amendment rights to peacefully protest.

The PCB is also concerned with the lack of identification of federal police officers. No badges, no insignia and no body-worn cameras leads the public to believe that these individuals are MPD officers when they cannot be identified. This causes safety issues and threatens to undermine OPC’s work to hold police officers accountable for misconduct with effective civilian oversight of law enforcement.

The PCB and OPC will continue to work diligently to improve community trust in the police department of the District of Columbia and provide a reliable system of police policy review. We have and always will believe Black Lives Matter.