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New London Police Union Asks City Council For Investigation Of Ackley

Union president accuses police chief of violation of duty manual and ordinances

Accusing her of a “systematic campaign…to retaliate against and undermine the leadership of the union and intimidate union members,” the president of the New London Police Union has asked the City Council to investigate Chief Margaret Ackley.

Todd Lynch, president of the union, said in an Aug. 14 letter to Council President Michael Passero that Ackley has violated the duty manual as well as associated rules and regulations and city ordinances. Lynch asked that the investigation make its findings public and take any appropriate action on the determination.

The council voted unanimously on Tuesday to send the request to the Administration Committee for further discussion. Councilor Anthony Nolan, a police officer, recused himself from the vote.

Lynch said the union based this request on e-mails from Ackley to resident Kathleen Mitchell. In these messages, Ackley advised Mitchell to request personnel and disciplinary files on Lynch; Officer Charles Flynn, the union’s political director; Master Patrol Officer Roger Baker; Officer Cornelius Rodgers; and Officer Joshua Bergeson, who was in January.

Lynch also mentions the e-mails in a , which accuses her of acting against him in a retaliatory manner due to past disagreements with her. He said in the letter to Passero that residents may request disclosure of such materials under the Freedom of Information Act, but that he considered Ackley violated ordinances by:

  • Seeking to “embarrass, humiliate, harass, and retaliate against the aforementioned officers.”
  • Disclosing information under “morally questionable” circumstances while “many of the allegations are simply untrue.”
  • Citing officers who “were active in union activity and appear to be targeted for reasons that are not fair or impartial.”
  • Encouraging Mitchell to file FOI requests in an attempt “to influence employees not to participate in protected union activity.”
  • Using city equipment and time to send e-mails that were not official city business.
  • Using municipal equipment of facilities in an improper way.

“It is our belief that due to the sensitivity and possible conflicts of the allegations made herein, that the city should utilize an impartial investigator to conduct the investigation and issue its findings,” said Lynch. “As you are aware, Chief Ackley is the subject of multiple complaints by police department members and the union, and the union believes that it is incumbent upon the city through the City Council to complete a full investigation of the claims made against Chief Ackley in order to ensure the public safety of the citizens of New London.”

Lynch said a similar request was made to Finizio and the union was told that an investigation has been requested. However, he said the union is concerned that an investigation ordered by the mayor could be “insufficient.” Lynch said the union has not been informed of whether any investigation has started and that members are concerned that it could be too limited in scope and that an investigation by municipal officials or employees could be influenced by “conscious or unconscious biases.”

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Carrie Lesage September 05, 2012 at 02:31 AM
Seriously, Mayor Finizio never addressed the police chief sending emails to a private citizen regarding personnel files? Does he think if he ignores it it will go away? The council should demand to see a course of action. SMH
Spencer September 05, 2012 at 03:03 AM
OK--wait a minute--I thought Lynch already settled all of this when the union signed the the new contract??? What is going on here???
NewLondonSource September 05, 2012 at 10:58 AM
Well this is interesting. Lynch and Finizio have made up with eachother and are now playing buddy buddy; We haven't heard from Ackley in awhile and FInzio hasn't mentioned her at all. Anyone else wondering if the Mayor has turned his back on a once staunch allie? Wouldn't be surprising...
Debbie September 05, 2012 at 12:29 PM
Chief of Police Ackley is during an outstanding job in New London, crime rate is lower, fewer civilian complaints, police car video surveillance cameras, etc., although Chief Ackley (female) continues to be the target of union president Tood Lynch (male) maybe its time for Chief Ackley to file suit against union president for discrimination, intimidation, harrassment, and bullying.
William MacDonald September 05, 2012 at 12:30 PM
Meanwhile, the taxpayers become less and less safe but are expected to pay more taxes for this folley.
Carol D. Fox September 05, 2012 at 01:52 PM
Right on Debbie.
lion king September 05, 2012 at 02:04 PM
maybe lynch is upset because he dont want the public to know that he has more complaints filed at himeself than any other officers from what i can see ,his buddies are no longer there to overlook these complaints so now he has to act like a real cop ,hard to do for him ,and no chip smith i am not a relative of ackley or supporter of anyone but people are starting to see the union president make a fool of himeself and now the police union as well ,its just a matter of time before he shoots himeself in the foot ,no punt intended,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,how much city time has mr lynch used for union bussiness ,,,,,,,,,
Just the facts September 05, 2012 at 02:40 PM
Actually Debbie, violent crime is up. And as for the cameras they were already in all of the police cruiser way before Ackley came along. Go and look at the FBI stats on their website and you can see that since Ackley took over it has gone up like 40%. Like most of the comments here you lack facts. It has nothing to do with male / female battling. It is about Ackley violating the rules and regulations and needing to be held accountable like she preaches to everyone all the time. Lynch is acting on behalf of the police union and its members because he was elected by them as the president. Stop trying to make him out to be the bad guy. Any other cop in his position as president would be doing the same thing. Ackley is not quailfied to lead, never was, and is never gonna be. Hopefully now that she can not steal any more money from the city with unchecked comptime she will move on with a pension that I estimate close to 100,000 buck. Little fact that she cut officers on the street to give money back to the city and get a pay raise, and during that time is when matt chew was killed. Not to mention she was miss using federal grant money to do it. And right after she decided that it wasnt smart. Shes a virus infrecting the entire city.
lion king September 05, 2012 at 03:20 PM
just the facts, perhaps you can check your facts ,word is that mr lynch got union president because no one else wanted it ,that from a very good source and on tape,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,to use mr chews killing in this manner shows your lack of facts ,,,,,,,,,,,
Luis Smart September 05, 2012 at 03:57 PM
Daryl cannot address the issue with Ackley, she knows where all the skeletons are burried. If Ackley rolls Daryl gets indicted and his happy mayoral gig is done. Ackley will be here until she wants to leave.
Luis Smart September 05, 2012 at 03:59 PM
THE VIOLENT CRIME RATE HAS RISEN 45% under her leadership. You are absolutly incorrect.
Just the facts September 05, 2012 at 06:39 PM
How does that not make him the president. Anyone could have run against him but they decided not to feeling he was best for the position. Look at the staffing prior to the death of Matt chew. A federal grant that was to be used for additional officers on the street was used to fill regular patrol positions voilating the conditions of the grant. Because te chief wanted to give money back so she could get a raise. Only after that incident did she use the federal money properly. Bottom line is ackley has been robbing the city of new London blind right under their noses, and it's come at the cost of public safety. Cutting overtime by not staffing positions on the street but banking 80,000 dollars in overtime herself. Also Can u dispute the FBI stats that crime has gone up?
RGray September 05, 2012 at 06:58 PM
So predictable some of you are. This is not about Lynch. This is about a chief who is an ineffective manager of people. Had she not had some, ahem, special help getting her job, she wouldn't have actually gotten it. Both she and Finizio need to go. Although I heard they are now on the outs. I hope they're both squirming about what will come out of this investigation.
Terri September 05, 2012 at 07:05 PM
Debbie, this is not about gender. Although, it's my understanding that the Chief uses that excuse fairly often to get what she wants. Frankly, it's insulting to all women. Nice that you have an unwarranted vendetta against Todd. I personally don't like Ackley. But, I could get past that for the citizens of NL if she was a decent leader. But, she's not. We'll just have to agree to disagree.
Terri September 05, 2012 at 07:06 PM
Well said, JTF. I wish I'd seen your post before I responded to Debbie's post above.
NewLondonSource September 05, 2012 at 07:11 PM
@Luis: Unfortunately, with the way the charter is written now, there is no verbiage for mayoral recall or due process if he is charged and convicted of a crime. He could theoretically be Mr. Mayor from behind bars until his term is up. Remember that when you go to the polls for the referendum.
Debbie September 05, 2012 at 11:57 PM
Is it worth maintaining excessive union contracts and union deals at taxpayers expense? Union contracts should be reduced upon their expiration with the City of New London. How many union contacts does the city maintain this fiscal year?
Paul September 06, 2012 at 12:23 AM
This is what NL should do with the THUGS we call police...http://jobs.aol.com/articles/2012/08/27/crime-ravaged-camden-nj-scraps-police-department-to-save-money/
lion king September 06, 2012 at 12:54 AM
i see alot of people on this blog site that state the mayoy is doing a bad job and loves to spend money ,lets take a look at the union president who wants the city to spend money on an investagation so that he can look like the good cop ,,,,,,,,,,,far from that you are mr lynch ,as off now you have several civil actions filed toward yourself ,civil actions you filed at the chief yourself ,and most likely more if i look ,you have done nothing but cost the city money and now you want to spend more ,on another note ,next time you are buddying up with the mayor at a press conference ask for a stool to stand on
Just the facts September 06, 2012 at 04:25 AM
Debbie you talk about high union contracts? Name one officer in that department that made $80,000 in overtime? Chief ackley did and she sits behind a desk! Some of which she was paid after the city council rejected it. You seem quick to forget she filed unsubstantiated complaints against busetto and the city and threatened to sue wasting tax payer money. She demanded an investigation that was done and proved it was bs. And your boy fizzy wanted to pay her 25 grand on top of it. Union contracts are not the problem corrupt department heads are.
Mark Greene September 06, 2012 at 10:26 AM
Walsh--your constant attack against Lynch regarding your personal agenda is tiresome. You LOST your civilian complaint so get OVER it. You cost the city more money defending what was a bogus complaint. That would make for a good story in The Day.
lion king September 06, 2012 at 08:16 PM
no marky ,not walsh but if he has issues with lynch than i now know there more than one of us ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,no complaint is bogus if investagated by the right people ,dont worry you will see that coming soon /////////////////////////////////on that note i will ask to be granted GARRITY ,YOU SEEM TO KNOW SO MUCH ABOUT THE NLPD ,LYNCH LIKES TO HIDE BEHIND IT
Get Real September 08, 2012 at 08:16 AM
Everyone needs to stop with the union bashing. Take a look at who cleans the city, polices the city, responds to emergencies. Tell me who would do it if they were all gone. Fact is, no one. The city needs these services. The members are protected by contracts because of irresponsible comments such as the ones above. The pensions are not high, in fact, they are too low. No retiring person with the current pensions can fully retire. Most wages are so low for union members, most have second jobs to survive. Before bashing those that serve you, take a look at the facts.
NewLondonSource September 08, 2012 at 09:23 AM
@get real: You are right, the city needs those services; but it does need the union that makes those services so expensive. Unions have outlived their usefulness, and even most unionized employees who actually do their job will tell you that they feel it's a burden to 'have' to belong to the union to work. Most would rather pocket those union fees that only seem to go to lining the pockets of union administrators. You can't possibl be serious when you say that pensions are too low, especially when they are based off of the last 3-5 years of earning. Pensions, by the way, should no longer be considered a guarantee, private or municipal. It's time for us Americans to start taking responsibility for our own future and depending on someone else to fund our retirement. Low wages? I guess it depends on the job. From what I've seen, pay for union employees is relatively commensurate with the skill level and education their job requires. Teachers might be one of the exceptions based on take home pay, but the fringe benefits they earn are extremely valuable, especially when compared to the public sector.
NewLondonSource September 08, 2012 at 09:25 AM
Typo, the last sentence of paragraph 3 above should read: " It's time for us Americans to start taking responsibility for our own future and NOT depending on someone else to fund our retirement."
Get Real September 08, 2012 at 10:32 AM
Some interesting points... Ever look at the education level of some of those that are working in municipal jobs? Ever work the hours that a lot of the municipal workers do? Probably not. That is why it is easy to make those comments. I bet you are a private worker. That is why you would make those comments. No fault of your own. Look at the police and fire. Average fireman cannot do the job when they hit their fifts. Yet, they have to continue to. Average policeman in a city like New London, if they can make it that long, would retire and have to continue to work. All city workers would retire at close to poverty levels. And for what? The fact is, the money contributed to the pensions is partially paid by the employee and the city. That is the way the system works. If private sector employees are upset with the money they earn and have to contribute one hundered percent to their own retirement, then they should make the same deals and make less money like a municipal employee, have the employer contribute to their retirement as well, work all different hours of the day, in all weather, and risk their lives as well. Maybe then they will have a right to complain. Just a thought.
Greg Bryant September 08, 2012 at 11:09 AM
The issues in the city are too numerous to be solved overnight. Yes the city unions have very lucrative contracts, fact is that the city administration negotiated these contracts with the unions. No one just decided we want this and you have to give it to us. The exception to that is the most recent deal with the New London Fire Fighters by Daryl. When Daryl made this deal he knew the financial status of the city and made a deal that would require $4,000,000.00 in new bonding to cover it. Yet he makes a plea for higher taxes saying he has become fically responsible. When did he do that? What did happen was Mr. Mike Passero was bought and paid for with bonded taxpayer money. Notice the changes in the votes of Mr. Passero since Daryl got him an extra $30,000.00 a year in his pension. Yes Passero is bought and paid for as are the rest of the union fire fighters. Bought and paid for with our money. They should be supporting us not Daryl. How do we save money with the unions? Look at all the fat and out of shape city employees, police, fire, public works department. We need a maintanance of physical standards clause in the union contracts. The employees need to be able to pass the same physical agility test that they took to get the job semi-annually or they are no longer city employees. Want to clear the ranks of older high paid emplyees and keep the ones that can do their jobs. This is the way to accomplish that. That is the next executive order that Daryl should sign.
Alphonse DeLachance September 08, 2012 at 01:25 PM
Greg, Mr. Passero has clearly shifted his focus away from the best interest of the people of New London and to the following of Daryl. Remember that a big part of this is that under the two agreements with the Police and Fire Unions. Councilor Passero and Councilor Nolan are bound to speak only in favor of the budget and the referendum. Their individualism and their personal convictions have been bargained away. Nolan got nothing for his soul, Passero got a doubling of his annual pension payments when he retires. Good deal for selling your soul to the Daryl. You deal with the Daryl you get the horns. Passero has proven to be a great disappointment and a sellout. Mr. Passero has no integrity in this city any longer. Nolan and Passero should resign from the council. How can either one of them act fiscally responsible for the citizens when they are bound by their employment contract to support the current budget no matter what?
Sue P. September 08, 2012 at 02:17 PM
Oh Boy Mr. DeLachance you hit the nail right on the head. What you just wrote is so true and eye opening. It seems politics as usual in New London doubled. I honestly feel foolish for standing up for the Fire fighters because I thought they were going to lose their jobs. When all is said and done all they did was stab the tax payer in the back to get what they want. Now that I think about it if Daryl did lay off all the people he said he was going to, half of Waterford would be jobless.
Daniella Ruiz September 13, 2012 at 01:59 PM
9:56 am on Thursday, September 13, 2012 i will not miss this opportunity to comment on the size of some belly's attached to a few of those 'peace officers. perhaps they are special operations officers that handle the arrest and detention of sumo wrestlers?. seriously, can they and other like employees really be consider 'fit and ready' to perform? unions may protect basic employment rights, yet they protect members that fail to perform fully and who also present opportunity for health disability claims in the future, early retirement benefits and thus, extra expense to find, recruit, train and initiate new officers to replace them. what many outside the 'business of govt' fail to grasp, is the long term costs they are forced to bear (as taxes) from these seemingly personal issues within the 'union protectorate'. obesity may be protected under some frivolous civil rights protection, but obesity doesn't protect the good of the common people paying for it.

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