Five Philadelphia police officers who were not criminally charged in a series of allegations are now facing internal disciplinary proceedings. They could lose their jobs.
The narcotics officers have been accused of everything from theft to serious misconduct in a series of incidents during drug raids at Philadelphia bodegas and corner stores.
The department’s Internal Affairs Bureau has notified the officers it has sustained allegations against them.
Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey says he could take direct action against the officers, after a 10-day window for a response is over.
“The decision is made by me on disciplinary action,” he said Wednesday. “I don’t do it too often, I do it on occasion. It’s something that I will consider in this case, but there is another course that it could take, and that is the police board of inquiry.”
Danilo Burgos, the former head of the Dominican Grocers Association, said bodega owners are upset that the U.S. attorney decided not to file charges in the case.
“Everyone is disappointed,” he said. “There’s a lot of questions as to how the case was carried out. A lot of the business owners say they were interviewed once and not called into a grand jury.”
The U.S. attorney’s office is not commenting on the issue. The Fraternal Order of Police has been successful in the past in having similar disciplinary actions overturned.