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New London – The police union is calling for Chief Margaret Ackley to be put on paid administrative leave so the city can investigate a claim that she may have conducted an improper investigation into the immigration status of homicide victim David Romero.
"… serious allegations of conspiracy to violate civil rights have been lodged against the Chief of Police,'' union president Todd Lynch wrote Friday in a letter to Mayor Daryl Justin Finizio. "A peripheral matter that is disturbing to the members of the police department is that it appears that Chief Ackley may have violated an Executive Order."
On Monday, Attorney Robert I. Reardon filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court claiming Ackley was "inappropriately conspiring with federal agencies to uncover information about a man 8½ years dead." Reardon is representing Romero's girlfriend and sister in a wrongful death lawsuit that claims police failed to respond properly to escalating domestic violence incidents that resulted in Romero being shot to death.
"We hear the administration talk about transparency,'' Lynch told The Day Friday. "We don't want things to be 'do as I say, not as I do.' Let's hold everyone accountable.''
The mayor issued a statement saying the "matter is under review.''
The union alleges that Ackley may have violated the mayor’s executive order, which states “The New London Police Department shall not inquire into the immigration status of individuals … except when the status pertains directly to a criminal investigation.’’