Elizabeth Rae-O’Donnell and Sue Bartos, both attorneys in our Livonia office, recently gave a presentation to police chiefs on Garrity Protection. The Garrity principle is an important tool to provide officers the necessary protection while still enabling departments to conduct thorough and complete internal investigations.
In Garrity v. New Jersey, the Supreme Court held that officers are not required to sacrifice their right against self-incrimination in order to retain their jobs. The basic premise of the Garrity protection is straightforward. First, an officer cannot be compelled, by the threat of serious discipline, to make statements that may be used in a subsequent criminal proceeding. Second, an officer cannot be terminated for refusing to waive his Fifth Amendment right to remain silent. Therefore, an officer who has been ordered to give a statement is given immunity from the use of the statement in a criminal proceeding.
Garrity Protection applies to all public employees, not just law enforcement. If your governmental entity is interested in a similar presentation on Garrity Protection, please contact either Ms. Rae-O’Donnell or Ms. Bartos.
Elizabeth Rae-O’Donnell is an attorney in our Livonia office where she concentrates her practice on municipal law, employment and labor law, and education law. She may be reached at (734) 261-2400 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Suzanne Bartos is an attorney in our Livonia office where she focuses her practice on employment and labor law, insurance defense, municipal law, education law, and litigation. She may be reached at (734) 261-2400 or email@example.com.