FOP President: APD Managed by Intimidation
Asheville's Fraternal Order of Police President Rondell Lance tells News 13 officers have lost confidence in their leadership in the Asheville Police Department. In an interview Friday, Lance told News 13 APD is severely fractured with rank and file officers afraid to speak out fearing they'll lose their jobs.
"It's an intimidating time at the police department to be an officer," said Lance. "The leadership seems to be a leadership of intimidation. They (officers) are almost afraid to do their jobs."
Lance said some younger officers have come to him with ethical concerns over what superiors are expecting them to do.
"It's coming from lieutenants and above," said Lance. "The mindset of this administration is not one of leadership that men and women can look to for guidance and for help, it's
more of bosses who, if you dare cross them, you do something wrong, you are going to pay for it and pay for it dearly."
But over the course of recent weeks some city leaders have said some problems in the department can be attributed to Chief Anderson working to improve the force.
Lance said he felt the problems within APD are systemic. He said one example includes an officer forced to charge a fellow officer with a citation.
Lance said the officer was in an accident in his squad car. Another officer who worked the accident didn't feel the accident warranted a citation. But Lance said a month later she was called in and ordered to give her co-worker a ticket.
"If you and I work side by side, and you're at fault, I shouldn't be the one who disciplines you. That's not the employee’s job to enforce discipline that's a sergeant, a lieutenant or a captain's job to enforce discipline, not me on another co-worker.
Lance said a formal complaint about the officers ethical concerns writing the ticket to her colleague was never filed. He said many officers are afraid to report problems for fear they will get moved to less desirable shifts or lose their jobs.
"It's many issues like that, with men and women are coming forward to me with concerns," said Lance. "We are getting daily calls and complaints from officers. Many say they would look leave the department.. They cannot work under this stress under this discipline mindset." News 13 reached out to Asheville leaders for comment. A call to the Mayor's office was not returned. News 13 was also told Chief Anderson was not available for comment.
By Kimberly King
Follow Kim @KimKingReports