According to the Baltimore Sun, Marvin McKenstry, the chairman of the Civilian Oversight Task Force, was involved in a tense confrontation with police in East Baltimore last month after he refused approximately 60 requests to produce his license and registration. McKenstry says it was an unlawful stop that occurred after he left a hearing on the city’s consent decree with the Justice Department in U.S. District Court. The decree was reached between the Justice Department under President Obama’s tenure and the city after the department found widespread violations of African Americans’ civil rights by Baltimore police. The decree is designed to improve police conduct, add some civilian oversight and improve relations with the community. The panel is preparing its recommendations due late next month and is currently seeing community input.
The Sun reports that police body-camera footage shows the stop “drew at least four officers to the 200 block of Aisquith St. on the afternoon of April 13” and McKenstry was given five citations totaling $500 in fines.
McKenstry, is an associate minister at the Victory House of Worship Church in West Baltimore and appointed to the oversight panel by Mayor Catherine Pugh, who said the situation was “unfortunate” and could have been avoided. Now the Fraternal of Police is pressuring the mayor to “reconsider” McKenstry’s appointment
McKenstry is not commenting other than to say the traffic stop was “a misunderstanding that’s been resolved.” “My focus is on the task force and completing that work for the City of Baltimore,” he said.
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