In the latest example of police officers showing a lack of faith in Anne Arundel County Police Chief James Teare, the International Brotherhood of Police Officers (IBPO) began running ads Thursday to show their support of Deputy Chief Emerson Davis.
Two weeks ago, Davis addressed the Anne Arundel County Council to discuss his lack of faith in Teare and that he felt the police force as a whole has become “dysfunctional.” Since then, the IBPO, the bargaining unit for Anne Arundel police sergeants and lieutenants, announced it will be airing ads on popular radio stations during high-listener times to publicly endorse Davis and his criticism of Teare.
“Deputy Chief Davis took a brave stand when he stood before the council and the public to testify under oath on the actions—and inactions—of Chief Teare,” said IBPO National President David J. Holway in a press release.
David Abrams, a spokesman for Leopold, told The Capital that the ads were merely a "smear campaign."
Local police officers began showing a lack of faith in Teare following the indictment of County Executive John R. Leopold by saying that they believe Teare ignored the alleged violations by Leopold.
“I think the chief just wanted to keep his boss happy,” Anne Arundel County Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) President O’Brien Atkinson told Patch. “[Teare] knew that if he stood up to [Leopold], he’d be fired.”
The FOP is the bargaining unit for Anne Arundel police officers with a rank of corporal or lower.
According to the IBPO release, “Teare did nothing even after his officers told him repeatedly of Leopold’s wrongdoings. The way to restore public trust is with honesty, candor and transparency.”
Atkinson said he would like more leaders in the police department to come forward and “really let the citizens know what is happening in our agency.” The FOP president said he hopes more residents become concerned with county government and that these ads help residents stay informed.
IBPO spokeswoman Meghan Walsh said the initial ad is the first of a two-part campaign. The first ad serves as a "thank you" to Davis while the next ad, yet to be released, will target Teare and Leopold more directly calling for the officials to "step aside" during the investigation, Walsh said.
The radio ads will run for several days starting Thursday on WPOC 93.1 FM, WQSR 102.7 FM and WCAO 600 AM.