Print

News >> Browse Articles >> Law Enforcement News

-18

Would You Ever Ticket Your Police Commissioner?

Would You Ever Ticket Your Police Commissioner?

New Haven Register via YellowBrix

April 21, 2011

EAST HAVEN — Officer Dennis Spaulding has a knack for turning up in the middle of things — this time ticketing a police commissioner Tuesday moments after the commissioner left the police station.

Police board member Joseph Civitello confirmed Tuesday night that Spaulding issued him an infraction for driving without a front marker plate.

“He gave me a ticket,” Civitello said of Spaulding.

“Evidently, over the winter my front marker plate became dislodged and was missing,” said Civitello.

Civitello said he was leaving the police station on North High Street Tuesday afternoon — driving behind acting Chief of Police Gaetano “Guy” Nappi, and with two police cruisers behind Civitello. Nappi turned right; Civitello and at least one of the cruisers turned left.

When Civitello got over the bridge that carries High Street over Interstate 95, the cruiser behind him flashed its lights and pulled him over.

Neither Nappi nor Deputy Chief John Mannion could be reached for comment.

Civitello, asked whether he thought the police officer was just doing his job, said, “I’m not going to talk about it. It’s just what it is. It’s whatever people want to read into it.”

The ticket is an infraction and Civitello must either pay it by April 29 or take it to court. He said he didn’t have the ticket handy, and wasn’t sure how much the fine might be. The state statute governing infractions lists the fine for failure to display a marker plate at $117.

Spaulding was one of the two police officers involved in the controversial incident on Feb. 19, 2009, in which the Rev.

James Manship, pastor of St. Rose of Lima Church in New Haven, was arrested after he videotaped police at My Country Store, a Latino-owned market on Main Street. The incident sparked a U.S. Justice Department investigation.


-18
  • Steve_mcqueen_max50

    ilegworldchamp

    over 3 years ago

    8966 Comments

    "BROWN HELMET AWARD WINNER" for bringing attention to his department for lack of common sense "AGAIN" .

  • Joefriday_max50

    alexy

    over 3 years ago

    3970 Comments

    Just stupid all the way around. If it is a LE vehicle and needs a front tag put a front tag on it. No one wih all the years of police experience that vehicle was around since winter did not notice and say " hey commisioner... get a front tag"
    As for the officer again use some common sense....

  • Untitledma28839986-0002_max50

    Irishcop1961

    over 3 years ago

    50322 Comments

    Big bump to Retleo, wiseass0282, and ilegworldchamp. It gets very hot in the summer and very cold in the winter walking a beat.

  • 01-08-09_1415_max50

    joel45acp

    over 3 years ago

    204 Comments

    The citation is not worth the hassle in the long run.

  • Img_1347a_max50

    Halefo5

    over 3 years ago

    166 Comments

    One hundred and seventeen dollars in some counties and more in others hurts just the same coming out of your pocket especially when you’re not getting anything in return after putting out that kind of money. Oh did I forget wast of time or a day's pay from work trying to correct the infraction on the vehicle and the time to fight that summons in court. Something for you to think about; just to prove what point. I hope it's all worth the trouble at the end.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    cxc

    over 3 years ago

    2 Comments

    I was wondering if the car belong to the police dpt. I would not cite my boss especially for something as minor as this. I often pull people over and just give them a verbal warning. I usually give civilian a break, so certainly I would extend the same to LEO.

  • Img_1347a_max50

    Halefo5

    over 3 years ago

    166 Comments

    Attitude has much to do with the issuing of a summons during a vehicular stop. It is great to use good common sense in any situation that you encounter, although I have had civilians help me out in arrest situation I cannot say I can 100% depend on any civilian to help me out especially in the areas I have worked in. An officer who has taken the same oath as I did, I believe I can 99% count on them to having my back any-day or night. In this case or any case like this one, professional discretion could have applied whether civilian or LEO.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Anonymous

    over 3 years ago

    I wouldn't have issued a citation. Not because he's a LEO but because it's just a minor infraction and I wouldn't treat a civilian any different. If the driver was being a jerk sure otherwise either a verbal warning or fix-it-ticket will do. As far as this garbage about not ticketing a LEO, if the offenses was serious enough or a repeated problem I certainly would. That's what I've been taught and what we do where I'm from.

  • Steve_mcqueen_max50

    ilegworldchamp

    over 3 years ago

    8966 Comments

    Retlo is 100% on the money . Not only limited but "VERY VERY SHORT" . His back up will always be out of service because of the B.S. that will come down over his ears. "HOT SHOT'S DON'T SURVIVE LONG" !

  • White_shirt_max50

    uncledennis1

    over 3 years ago

    23288 Comments

    I would not have issued a traffic summons instead I would have written a 48 hour compliance order. I assure you the officer will be on a short string in the future. As someone commented common sense is not so common.

  • Ohio_deputy_1__max50

    WCSO_DeputySheriff

    over 3 years ago

    54 Comments

    I don't think it could have been put better than how TrafficCop28 said it.
    Bump.

  • Homer_nytp_max50

    NYTPD12

    over 3 years ago

    212 Comments

    @TXPD, Oh, Okay, thanks for the bump explaination.

    Yea, NJ has always been a hard core State bordering the ridiculous. Back in the mid 80's I lived in upstate NY and traveled home after work via the Palisades Parkway once over the GW Bridge. It was always risky and they used to warn us not to carry or use another route. It was very ridiculous to say the least. That was my short cut to get home after the midnight shift.

    I suppose these are some of the things that make the job and life interesting. Be safe.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    SPDMESI

    over 3 years ago

    24 Comments

    Sounds no good to me but then again, I wasn't there...

  • 20552_1343137337912_1215571721_31006460_5991340_n_max50

    TrafficCop28

    over 3 years ago

    1424 Comments

    "Professional courtesy begins with the officer being stopped, not with the officer making the stop."

    Let's stop calling this professional courtesy and call it what is really is, officer discretion. "Professional courtesy" sounds like the good ole boys club. We use officer discretion in every contact we make, not only to other LEOs. I don't believe in it and it tarnishes us in the public's eyes.

  • Me__mr

    cgingo

    over 3 years ago

    21884 Comments

    Like TXPD, I too gave a ticket to an LEO once in my career. He started the conversation with "you can't give me a ticket, and ended it with I'm not signing anything". In this instance though, I'll wait for the whole story, but if this is a personal thing, this may have been a very poor use of authority.

PoliceLink School Finder

Save time in your search for a criminal justice degree program. Use PoliceLink's School Finder to locate schools online and in your area.

Get Info

* In the event that we cannot find a program from one of our partner schools that matches your specific area of interest, we may show schools with similar or unrelated programs.