How Far Will the BPD Go to Preserve Police Corruption?

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Police corruption

After Baltimore police detective Joe Crystal blew the whistle on two city officers for the assault of a handcuffed drug suspect in 2011, the department didn’t exactly give him an award for integrity. In fact, he claims he was “targeted with taunts and threats from four different police supervisors.” One day he found a dead rat on his vehicle.

He reported the harassment, but despite promising a “full investigation,” the department hasn’t done anything. Well, no, they’ve done something. They opened an Internal Affairs investigation against Crystal for the relatively minor infraction of using his police vehicle to drive his wife home.

Then the department offered to drop the IA investigation if he would agree not to bring suit against the city for witness intimidation and not to talk to reporters about the deal. Instead, Crystal has decided to leave the Baltimore police force.

Police Commissioner Anthony Batts claims to support Crystal as a whistleblower “[s]tanding before police officers in a community and saying ‘I will not tolerate misconduct.'” So why do we have an investigation into Crystal instead of a more important one into the “four different police supervisors” Crystal claims to have been threatened by? Why are we losing a whistleblower and holding on to the alleged harassers?

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  1. No good can come to Mr. Crystal by remaining in the BPD, No one will want to work with him as he has become a pariah to the rest of the department. He will find himself in a dangerous situation with no backup from his fellow officers. Everyone will be afraid that a minor infraction he sees will be reported. While most will agree that what he witnessed was a wrong action, his reporting it is simply not done. As a former supervisor in the BPD, I would not want him working for me. He is not the kind of cop I would want to walk through a door with.

    • I apologize but I am glad u are no longer a supervisor in BPD. So let me get this right. ….you would have a lier, someone who breaks the law and breaks the oath to protect and serve, basically a criminal, to protect u rather than an honest man who takes his job serious and truly BELIEVES in the oath to protect and serve???? Wow, crazy, I have another question….how do u know that those same men who did wrong will NOT do the same to u? Sorry I’m just trying to understand Because I was raised to know that a cheater will always be a cheater, a lier will always be a lier and a criminal will always cheat and lie to get what they want. I would never trust those men who lied and threatened Joe in order to cover their ass. If I was and honest person and took my job serious I would have no problem working with joe, but if I had something to hide then I could see how working with Joe would be a problem. (edited)

  2. Nick’s comment is very thought provoking, but it’s depressing. If a code of silence is necessary to support police in a very difficult job, then is the BPD destined to be nothing more than a tool for the violent suppression of Baltimore’s underclass?

  3. For the Retired Baltimore cop who thinks Joe Crystal did the wrong thing, It shows the mind set for corruption that the department has and you are know better then the others.
    I’m a Retired cop from NY.
    I also am Retired with the Inspector Generals Office in Florida.
    Joe Crystal is my son and I couldn’t be prouder of him.
    He has shown what a cop is suppose to be and has more courage then any other cop on that department.
    I have put cops like that away and am proud to Rid the State of corrupt Police Officers that in my opinion is the worst thing you can be.
    I only wish the system had caught and punished properly all of them.
    The Commissioner is know better as he let’s this type of behavior continue and just gives lip service to the public.
    I would be proud to have Joe buy my side and beside the fact that this cop wouldn’t want him going threw a door with him is a joke.
    I wouldn’t want a crooked cop going threw a door with me because he couldn’t be trusted.
    If you don’t have honor you don’t have anything.
    I am so proud of my son.

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