The Civilian Complaint Review Board is supposedly “sick of people lying about police misconduct” — and wants to make complainants sign a document warning them that they could be hit with perjury charges for filing false claims, officials told The New York Post on Thursday. Those who are caught fabricating accounts of police abuse could then be reported to the cops or a DA’s office for potential prosecution.
This is the same CCRB that for nearly three months has stonewalled The Post’s bid to learn more about the cases of 33 NYPD cops who were found to have lied during agency probes of police misconduct.
“This agency has failed to do its job in the past and this is one aspect of that,” said CCRB Chairman Richard Emery.
But Richard Emery, the new head of the Board doesn’t always practice what he preaches; he is the guy responsible for stonewalling public requests and inquiries from media.
“We want to enhance the integrity of the process. One way to do that is to make clear there may be consequences to lying to us, serious consequences.”
People who levy complaints about cops with the CCRB must then do an in-person interview with an investigator.
They currently sign a document swearing everything they said was true, but it does not specify potential consequences — and Emery said no one has ever been prosecuted for lying to the board.
He said stronger wording on the forms will help weed out the bogus allegations and also let cops know they too could face perjury for making false statements.
“I would favor warning people,” Emery said.
CCRB member Bishop Mitchell Taylor added, “That kind of warning triggers a truth serum.”
Once the new language is drafted, it would be discussed at a public meeting and then voted on by the full board. There are normally 13 members, but the CCRB currently has three vacancies.
Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association President Patrick Lynch, who has been pressuring the CCRB for the change, said that he’ll believe it when he sees it.
“We will watch with great interest the reaction to these proposals and the end result will show us if they intend to be serious about civilian complaints in the future or if they will continue down the same, inept cop-bashing road,” the union leader said.
In 2014, the board received 4,779 complaints. Of those, 1,922, or 37 percent, were fully investigated. Only 335 were ultimately deemed legitimate.
In 1,443 cases, officers were either exonerated, or the claims were found to be unfounded or unsubstantiated.
Others remained unresolved because the cop was never ID’d.
The board angered cops this year with a plan that would allow people to file anti-police complaints in their City Council members’ district offices, rather than go the the main CCRB facility in lower Manhattan.