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Upper Darby Cops Reinstated by Arbitration Panel

Wednesday, November, 13, 2013


Two police officers in Upper Darby Township, Pennsylvania, were terminated last June over allegedly assaulting a 17-year-old in their custody at the time.  However, an arbitration panel has recently recommended that the police officers should be reinstated without back pay.  Following that recommendation, Upper Darby Township Mayor Thomas Micozzie has announced that Officer Michael Givens and Officer Ryan Wiseley (an eight-year veteran and seven-year veteran of the police force, respectively) will be reinstated to their jobs this week. 


The decision to officially reinstate the officers was made at a November 6th meeting between the Delaware County Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 27 and the Upper Darby township officials.  “The arbitration panel strongly recommended the officers be reinstated,” Micozzie said.


The two officers were placed on administrative leave following a self-reported incident involving the arrest of three juveniles.  The arrest occurred after a victim of cellphone theft filed a report near 69th Street, and shortly after bringing the three young men into custody.  The alleged assault soon followed.


“One of the two officers went to a sergeant to report being involved in an incident and he believed it was on video,” said police Superintendent Michael Chitwood. “[Patrol Captain] Paparo told me he reviewed the tape and tells me, ‘By itself, it doesn’t look good.  I conferred with the mayor and Tom Judge, the chief administrative officer, and we decided to contact the district attorney.’”


However, S. Stanton Miller, the attorney representing the Fraternal Order of Police challenged the decision to dismiss the officers following the incident.   “In my opinion, the termination was not justified under the circumstances of this case,” Miller said.  “Management has to prove they had just cause to terminate the officers from their careers. The management does not have the final say.”