Former Camden cops proceed with whistleblower suit against city

(Mel Evans/AP Photo

(Mel Evans/AP Photo

Two former Camden police officers can proceed with a whistleblower lawsuit against the city, according to a ruling by the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Anthony Galiazi and Charles J. Holland claim they were retaliated against in 2008 after speaking out against a new department policy called “directed patrols,” which required officers to engage with residents who were not suspected of any crime.

The former officers said that higher-ups transferred them from an elite squad to a regular patrol unit and reduced their pay after they spoke out.

Reversing a lower court decision, the federal appeals panel in Philadelphia said the men had a legitimate claim under New Jersey’s whistleblower law, the Conscientious Employee Protection Act.

But the appeals court left intact a lower court’s ruling that the policy of “directed patrols” did not violate New Jersey’s anti-quota statute, as the plaintiffs had claimed.

The appeals court also upheld the dismissal of the claims of a third officer, John Williamson, who also said he was retaliated against by department officials.

Camden, which dissolved its police department in 2013, is now patrolled by a county-run force.

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