Greensboro assistant police chief suspended

by Jordan Green

Assistant Chief Ronald Rogers of the Greensboro Police Department was placed on suspension on Monday.

The 49-year-old Rogers was promoted in 2007 to assistant chief, which gives him command responsibility for the investigative bureau. According to an official biography, Rogers has worked in patrol, vice/narcotics, criminal investigations and watch operations. The assistant chief joined the force in 1984, and earns a salary of $87,277.

Based on North Carolina’s privacy of employee personnel records statute, City Manager Rashad Young did not provide any information about the cause or duration of Rogers’ suspension. Young said the decision to suspend Rogers came out of the City Manager’s Office and the human relations department rather than from an internal investigation by the police department.

“The suspension was my decision to make entirely,” he said.

Lt. Hope Newkirk said that Asst. Chief Dwight Crotts will be covering for his suspended colleague in Rogers’ absence.

Rogers is a plaintiff, along with 38 other black police officers, in a federal lawsuit alleging racial discrimination. The lawsuit contends that “after David Wray became police chief and Gilmer Brady became deputy police chief, they directed subordinate officers to gather pictures of black officers of the Greensboro Police Department for the use of lineup books and other visual aids (…) for the purpose of framing, embarrassing and wrongfully investigating and charging black officers with crimes, offenses and violations of both law and police policies.”

District 3 Councilman Zack Matheny said news of the assistant chief’s suspension “causes great concern,” adding that he expects council to be cautious about directing the city manager to release additional information about Rogers’ suspension, which is allowable under North Carolina’s privacy of employee personnel records statute on the basis of being essential for maintaining public confidence.

“I hope [citizens] see that we’re taking action on and paying attention to everybody and our police department as well, and they’re not immune to repercussions if they are not acting within the code of a police officer,” Matheny said. “I think it’s good that we’re paying attention. I don’t want to take credit from our other 500 some officers. I feel we’ve got really good police officers.”