A criticism was filed with the Harford County Sheriff’s Workplace in Maryland after a Black legal professional was detained by a deputy who believed he was a suspect impersonating a lawyer.
Rashad James, a Maryland Authorized Assist legal professional, was representing a consumer, who was not current, on the Harford County District Courtroom on March 6. After James was profitable in getting his consumer’s file expunged, a sheriff’s deputy within the courtroom confronted him, reported WBAL-TV
“Whereas going by means of the incident, it was kind of a really surreal second,” James instructed WBAL.
The deputy started questioning whether or not James was honestly a lawyer or a suspect impersonating one.
“After the listening to, that is after I encountered the officer who incorrectly referred to as me by the identify of the consumer. I said that I used to be not the consumer, that I used to be, the truth is, the consumer’s legal professional,” James instructed the native information station.
Even after the deputy requested for identification and James confirmed his license, the officer continued asking James to offer his state bar card, an merchandise he’s not required to hold by regulation.
“That is really the primary time this has occurred to me, and I have no idea of any colleagues who’ve had an identical expertise,” James stated in an interview with the Baltimore Solar.
The deputy then referred to as his supervisor whereas James was detained.
“If Mr. James had been white, this may not have occurred,” Chelsea Crawford, James’ legal professional, instructed reporters.
Though the difficulty was ultimately resolved, James and his attorneys have filed a criticism with the Harford County Sheriff’s Division asking for an inside investigation.
“It ought to have been sufficient when Mr. James appeared in courtroom and the decide accepted on the file that he was an legal professional and his consumer was absent. That ought to have been sufficient, and at that second, it wasn’t for that officer,” Crawford instructed WBAL.
In an announcement to WBAL, Sheriff Jeffrey Gahler stated, “The Harford County Sheriff’s Workplace is conscious of those accusations, as we acquired a proper criticism this afternoon. As with all complaints, the criticism filed on behalf of Mr. James was promptly assigned to the Harford County Sheriff’s Workplace – Workplace of Skilled Requirements for a whole and thorough investigation. We take all complaints significantly.”
For the reason that incident, James says he now carries enterprise playing cards with him.
The Maryland Authorized Assist launched an announcement to WBAL Tuesday saying they’re conscious of the incident and totally assist James.
“We stand behind Rashad right this moment, and behind others who’ve skilled racial profiling and discrimination–a menace to their primary human and civil rights–with the target to stop an incident like this from ever taking place once more. Discrimination has no place in our society, particularly not inside the ranks of our judicial system, the place the authorized enjoying subject is commonly already unleveled for residents who can’t afford authorized illustration.
“We wish to thank Andrew Freeman, Chelsea Crawford, and their crew at Brown Goldstein & Levy, for representing Legal professional James on this matter. We’re hopeful that the Harford County Sheriff’s Workplace will take the steps essential to conduct an inside investigation into this incident and we look ahead to a passable consequence for all events concerned.”