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Union Files Complaint Against Chief Who Made Off-Duty Arrest

Union Files Complaint Against Chief Who Made Off-Duty Arrest

The Times-Tribune

April 19, 2011

Scranton, Penn. — The Scranton police union has filed an unfair labor practice complaint against the city for an off-duty drug arrest made by Police Chief Dan Duffy in March.

The complaint, which was filed with the state Labor Relations Board on April 14, takes issue with the chief arresting a man who was allegedly in possession of marijuana because the chief is not a member of the collective bargaining unit and was “off duty” when the March 20 arrest was made.

“I think it’s absurd. I’m not going to turn my head on crime that takes place,” Chief Duffy said. "I took the same oath (as a police officer) that everyone else took.

“On my day off and I’m driving around as the police chief, and that’s wrong?” he asked.

The complaint states that “the work of apprehending and arresting individuals has been the sole and exclusive province of members of the bargaining unit,” and that the city did not inform or negotiate with the union that the chief would be “performing bargaining unit work.”

Because of this, the union says the city violated the state Labor Relations Act and the Policemen and Firemen Collective Bargaining Act.

“We’re not out to bust his chops,” Sgt. Bob Martin, police union president, said. “It’s not against the chief. The action is against the city.”

Mayor Chris Doherty declined to comment on the matter Monday.

While the chief has been known for several off-duty arrests in the city, the complaint only makes mention of the March 20 incident.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 4 years ago

    you guys are making the union look bad. a cop is a cop is a cop. get real.

  • Skruffy2_max50


    about 4 years ago


    In my opinion, the Chief is never off-duty......

    Maybe they should'a called in "Dwight?"

  • Police_car_max50


    about 4 years ago


    This is the exact reason that we (lPublic safety) have been getting lumped into the same catagory as teamster unions of old when it comes to republicans blasting unions. This does not even begin to make sense. Shame on the PA bargaining unit.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 4 years ago


    I'm not in any union thank goodness but would it be right if someone from the board was in need of LE and I was the only one close enough, but since I was off duty...suddenly I remembered that I may have left my stove on so I can't help at this time. Oh how it may be different if this drug peddler was selling the board member's juvenile son or daughter! I can almost bet that certain union decisions have made while "off duty" but weren't final till on the clock. So I suppose even thinking about union things out of work would be the same as taking action as the Chief did. Thumbs up Chief Duffy and keep on being the Public Servant you swore to be!

  • Rscn0180_max50


    about 4 years ago


    As my wife would say when I'm about to do something bone headed.


  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 4 years ago


    LOL LOL LOL LOL.............sorry let me compose myself..........LOL LOL LOL ........sorry....
    This is a union that is supposed to protect and serve..........LOL LOL LOL................

  • Img_0103_max50


    about 4 years ago


    HUGE BUMP..!! pcekpr962

    And as many will agree, this union must have hidden motives as to be so brasin towards the chief for simply doing what is expected of anyone of us, who comes across a similar situation. This does no doubt cast a foolish looking image, upon the union and the Officers involved. I think that it is a simple case of "bad blood" between the chief and the union. It looks too obvious not to be.

  • Thumbs_pscoa_20star_max50


    about 4 years ago


    Iam sure the union can find something better to fight for being in law snforcement is not a job its a lifestyle
    if you do something worng off-duty your still a cop. just like my dept a Lt or above can not respond to a fight unless it an officer is involed

  • Az_phx_motorcade1a_max50


    about 4 years ago


    Silly union ...

  • Est_training_with_kansas_city_metro_037_max50


    about 4 years ago


    Police Unions are already misunderstood enough by the public. Thanks for the black eye.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 4 years ago


    Any union that forbids a sworn officer from making an arrest just because he isn't a member of the union needs to be put out to pasture. Taking it a step farther, praise to the chief for stopping a crime in progress. I don't know about there but here in Indiana a sworn officer has jurisdiction 24/7 and with few exceptions, anywhere in the state. We don't make a habit of petty arrest in other jurisdictions but I have arrested criminals in other counties, off duty, when I was the county sheriff of a different county when a serious crime was taking place. Good job chief and to the union, get a real job. If a union is needed, get one that has a little common sense and doesn't dictate that every officer has to be a member and play by their rules. We are cops, union or not, and the public needs us to act so.

  • Badgepatch_20copy_max50


    about 4 years ago


    I have worked for three local agencies during my career and participated in the unions. My Sheriff and both Chiefs of Police were salaried and technically on-duty/on-call 24/7 (as was all upper command staff). My guess is Scranton PD is no different. I suppose if Scranton PD has a policy which forbids any kind of off-duty action, and the Chief has disciplined others for violating that policy, then the union might have a point. Unfortunately I suspect that is not the case and the union is wasting their time and resources over something very stupid.

  • Jpd_new_max50


    about 4 years ago


    Wonder who released this story? Maybe the Chief who has been fighting with the union about other things more important than this story?

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 4 years ago


    What stupidity. This just gives those that think public employee unions shouldn't exist more ammo for their arguments. A cop is a cop is a cop, whether rookie or chief and once you take the oath, you have a duty to act, on-duty or off, in accordance with that oath and state laws. What would the headlines read if the chief had ignored the incident and what would the POA be yelling about in that instance? What a moronic and wrong-headed lawsuit.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 4 years ago


    Since when is it acrime for a off duty cop to do what he was sworn to do. I do support unions myself however, in this incident the union is lacking in what I call COMMON SENSE!!!!!! Way to take down the scum of society Chief

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