Agents' injuries prompt union call for review

June 20, 2008|By Annie Linskey | Annie Linskey,SUN REPORTER

A Division of Parole and Probation union chief is calling for a statewide review of safety after two agents were injured last week by a man attempting to flee from a city police officer.

On June 13, a man who had violated the terms of his state supervision became unruly and ran away when a city police officer tried to serve him with a warrant at the state agency's East Preston street office, said Rick Binetti, a spokesman for parole and probation.

The man, Marvell Morgan, encountered Da'Shawn Cabbagestalk, an agent with parole and probation, and tried to enter her office, Binetti said. She tried to prevent him from coming in and suffered a concussion. Two other agents, Daryll Showers and Wallace Saunders, came to assist her, and Showers' wrist was broken while trying to defuse the situation, Binetti said.

"I'm very, very upset about this situation," said Rai Douglas, president of Local 3661 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees. "To have two agents injured is of great concern because security has always been a concern in this agency." He added that the city police should have sent more than one officer to serve the warrant.

Binetti said that Gary D. Maynard, the head of the Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services, which includes parole and probation, would hear the union's concerns.

"Obviously we are always concerned about security," Binetti said.

Sterling Clifford, a city police spokesman, would not say why only one officer was sent to arrest the man. "That falls under the category of operational details that we don't get into publicly," he said. "The warrant apprehension task force takes as many officers as they need to make sure nobody is injured."

He added that the city police would respect any new procedures that the state agency develops.

"Sometimes people who are about to be arrested don't want to be," Clifford said. "There is a degree of unpredictability any time you are going to lock someone up."

annie.linskey@baltsun.com

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