Murphy Decision To Sign Legislation
Moving Police Involved Shooting
Investigations To AG’s Office
COLLIGAN STATEMENT ON MURPHY DECISION TO SIGN LEGISLATION MOVING POLICE INVOLVED SHOOTING INVESTIGATIONS TO ATTORNEY GENERAL’S OFFICE
WOODBRIDGE – New Jersey State Policemen’s Benevolent Association President Patrick Colligan today released the following statement on Governor Phil Murphy’s decision to sign legislation that will put the Attorney General’s Office in charge of investigations involving police involved shootings that require deadly force. The legislation will remove these investigations from County Prosecutor’s Offices throughout the state and is in direct contrast with testimony recently given by his own Attorney General, Gurbir Grewal.
Currently in New Jersey, all investigations into police involved shootings that require deadly force are governed by the Attorney General’s Independent Prosecutor Directive – issued in 2006 and strengthened in 2015 – which establishes procedures for conducting these investigations within county prosecutor’s offices, and involves the Attorney General’s Office to provide an appropriate review of these investigations.
“We received word today that Governor Murphy is going to sign legislation that will move all investigations of police involved shootings that require deadly force from County Prosecutor’s Offices into the Attorney General’s Office,” said Colligan. “This legislation is terrible public policy and I have reached out personally to the governor to express my extreme disappointment and serious concerns with the ramifications of his decision to allow this legislation to become law without a veto addressing the concerns of law enforcement. County Prosecutor Office’s across the state do a tremendous job whenever these unfortunate situations arise, and they already have the Attorney General’s Office perform comprehensive reviews when the investigations are finished.”
Colligan continued, “We recognize that there was significant outside pressure on the governor regarding this legislation from various community groups but the fact remains that the Attorney General’s Office does not have the resources, the training or the manpower to take on this new role. In fact, the Governor’s own Attorney General recently testified in public hearings against putting his office in charge of these investigations. Governor Murphy’s decision to move forward with this legislation is a step in the wrong direction for law enforcement and for the public at large. It is a direct slap in the face to every law enforcement officer throughout the state.”