U.S. Law Enforcement Whistleblowers: The Common Denominator of Black and Blue Lives Matter
By: Golden Badge
Dr. Sandra Nunn co-wrote the referenced article in which she shares several insights. Nunn, a former federal agent and high profile national security whistleblower, is now an ethics expert and National Security Specialist. According to the GB article, “Nunn attests from personal and professional experience that the primary motivation of whistleblowers typically is to protect the public from harm.” Jackson adds, “Golden Badge embodies the highest regard for Black Lives Matter because to our members, all lives really do matter.”
Zena Crenshaw-Logal is a lawyer before the U.S. Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals and Nunn’s as well as Jackson’s co-author. She explains that the GB article “establishes constitutional rights unique to law enforcement whistleblowers subjected to retaliatory criminal prosecution based on false evidence.” She says the 36 page article with footnotes gives these “framed heroes” grounds to access the power of government used against them to identify those conspiring to punish their whistleblowing and exclude them from criminal law enforcement.
Mark P. Lipton of Tennessee and Maurice Morris of Ohio are reportedly GB members and were deputy sheriffs until criminally prosecuted under circumstances that the GB article details. A question to “ponder while considering those details (is) do they suggest that Lipton and/or Morris were subjected to whistleblower retaliation by government officials enough to warrant a reasonably thorough government investigation of the matter?”
Mark P. Lipton is the first to test the GB-formulated equal protection and due process considerations for law enforcement whistleblowers. On January 12, 2016, Lipton filed his “PETITION FOR RELIEF FROM CONVICTION OR SENTENCE” as case number 15118-II, Lipton vs. The State of Tennessee, before the Circuit Court of Sevier County, Tennessee at Sevierville, Tennessee. The petition asserts several grounds on which Lipton claims to have been denied effective assistance of trial and appellate counsel and alleges prosecutor misconduct. Noting that she has yet to see the finalized petition, Crenshaw-Logal surmised from a draft the synergy between Lipton’s more traditional constitutional rights arguments and his GB-inspired contentions. According to Crenshaw-Logal, the “sworn public officer discrimination that Lipton’s conviction reflects and government’s corresponding role of after-the-fact accomplice to retaliatory selective prosecution offends equal protection and due process provisions and exceeds all government powers or functions cognizable under our U.S. Constitution.”
GB member Maurice Morris is contemplating his options. In their respective hometowns, he and Lipton were high profile whereas Michael German, Robert MacLean, and Frank Terreri became nationally recognized law enforcement whistleblowers. The Introduction to a 2010 white paper featuring German, MacLean, and Terreri among others -- “WHISTLEBLOWER WITCH HUNTS: The Smokescreen Syndrome” published by the acclaimed Government Accountability Project -- explains that “(a)lmost by definition, the most natural target for retaliatory investigations will be whistleblowers, those who exercise free speech rights to challenge abuses of power” and foretells that even “(e)xoneration does not free whistleblowers from retaliation, unless they get the point and become silent observers after successfully defending their innocence.”
Robert Michaels, founder of Serve & Protect which treats trauma among law enforcement officers, said this about the toll of retaliation:
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Zena Crenshaw-Logal, Esq.*
Golden Badge Co-Administrator