W-B officers disciplined over social media posts
Facebook posts on the police union page were critical of the chief and her administration.
WILKES-BARRE — The leaders of the Wilkes-Barre Police Benevolent Association are at odds with city police Chief Marcella Lendacky and her administration. Again. The PBA’s president, Sgt. Phil Myers, and its vice president, Officer Dan Duffy, faced disciplinary action for posts on the PBA Facebook page that criticized Lendacky and police Commander Ronald Foy, Myers confirmed Saturday.
Officers of the PBA have criticized Lendacky and her leadership since before Mayor Tony George appointed her as police chief in March 2016. Myers asked Wilkes-Barre city council last December to investigate Lendacky’s administration. George has stood firmly behind Lendacky, insisting he will not replace her.
Myers on Saturday declined to provide details about what kind of discipline he and Duffy faced, citing pending litigation. He referred a reporter to a statement posted to the PBA Facebook page Friday night.
According to that statement, Myers and Duffy received disciplinary notices from Lendacky in June based on posts to the PBA Facebook page on April 17 and April 18.
The April 17 post criticized Foy for changing department policy regarding access to report data in the department’s records system. Foy issued a directive that prohibited officers from accessing that data, the post stated.
The revised policy made officers’ jobs more dangerous, since they would no longer have access to crime records such as information about suspects from other officers’ cases, the post stated.
The April 18 post stated that Foy ordered officers to omit or remove information from reports.
Myers received an additional disciplinary notice for not providing “protected union information” to Foy, according to the PBA.
Much remained unclear about the matter as of Saturday, including what kind of discipline was meted out to the officers, whether they have already served a suspension, what measures the PBA will take to appeal and why the action against the officers based on events in April just came to light on Friday.
Myers and Duffy were widely rumored to have faced suspensions, but Duffy was listed in court records as the arresting officer in a felony case in Wilkes-Barre on Friday.
The principals in the dispute did not shed much light on the matter Friday or Saturday.
Lendacky did not return multiple messages seeking comment.
George said he could not comment since it is a personnel issue, but said he would be available to respond to any statements Myers or Duffy might make.
Duffy could not be reached for comment. Myers said he could not comment beyond the statement posted to the PBA Facebook page.