National Police Misconduct Reporting Project

Agency Declines to Name Officer Involved in Fatal Shooting

From the Washington Post:

Nearly three weeks after a Metro Transit Police officer shot and killed a 44-year-old man in a Lanham neighborhood, officials have not disclosed the identity of the officer or divulged many details of the deadly encounter.

Dan Stessel, a Metro spokesman, identified the dead man as Chester Joseph Crestwell Jr. of Lanham. However, because of concerns about the safety of the officer involved in the incident, Stessel said, the transit authority would not identify the officer.

The Prince George’s County Police Department, which is leading the investigation into the fatal shooting, typically releases the names of county officers who are involved in shootings. A spokesman for Prince George’s police said the agency was deferring to the wishes of Metro and was withholding the name of the Metro Transit officer.

The region’s largest police agencies have different policies on information related to officer-involved shootings. In Prince George’s and Montgomery counties, departments generally release the names of officers involved in such incidents. In Fairfax, police typically release the names of officers involved in shootings but only after the county prosecutor has reviewed the shooting and only if the officer is not undercover or would not be endangered by being publicly identified. In the District, the D.C. police generally do not release the names of officers involved in such cases.

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