Finizio issues orders on pot possession, immigration status
New London -- Mayor Daryl Justin Finizio issued his first four executive orders today, instructing the city police department not to target for arrest potential illegal immigrants and people found in possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia on private property.
On his first full day of office after being sworn in Monday, Finizio issued one order that states "No City police officer shall issue an infraction or violation ... for possession of marijuana or paraphernalia on private property if the owner of said private property does not make a complaint or request assistance from the officer."
The order goes on to say that no New London police officer shall be disciplined for failing to enforce such drug laws.
Another order says that, except for employees with "safety-sensitive positions," no city worker will be disciplined for failing a random drug test in which marijuana use is detected.
In addition, Finizio ordered that the police department "shall not inquire into the immigration status of individuals that they come in contact with, except when that status pertains directly to a criminal investigation." The order added that police "shall not independently undertake to approach, interview, interrogate, detain or arrest any suspected illegal alien or refugee when a potential violation of the federal immigration law is not the principal issue."
The first of Finizio's orders today instructed police not to profile people "based upon their racial, religious, sexual and/or ethnic background as the sole or primary reason and purpose for any stop."
Finizio could not be immediately contacted to explain the reason for the orders. But he told a member of The Day's editorial department that these policies had been promised during his campaign and he wanted to get them out of the way early on to move forward with more important issues.