Officers Pepper Sprayed
Officers Randy McLellan, Donnette Weeks, Chris Dyer, William Hester and Nevine Zaki were assaulted with pepper spray. In short, the Commissioner and Director used government resources to punish the ACOA President for speaking out for the membership.
No Law Enforcement group, whether it be Police Officers, Troopers, or Correctional Officers, can allow its fellow Officers to be pepper sprayed for political reasons. A Commissioner cannot be allowed to use Government resources to punish an Association President for speaking on behalf of the membership he was elected to represent. The Governor’s inaction forced Randy McLellan to take legal action to protect himself, his shift, and the membership.
Federal Constitutional Case Filed in Superior Court
On January 28, 2014 Randy McLellan filed a lawsuit against Commissioner Joseph Schmidt and Director Bryan Brandenburg in Superior Court for interfering with his constitutional and civil rights to perform Association duties as a Board Member, Association President, and Correctional Officer. Please read the complaint so you are aware of the issues leading up to and involved with the spraying.
Get the Truth Out
Neither the Governor nor the Troopers acted to rectify this abuse of power. When they were informed the Governor and Troopers gave the appearance of attempting to cover the assault up by calling it “training”. Now the DOC is continuing with the same theme:
“Kaci Schroeder, DOC spokeswoman, said people are “periodically retrained if there’s an issue,” but that information is contained in personal files. She could not say if anyone had been pepper-sprayed twice in the past.”
– Anchorage Daily News
The fact is – No one has ever been ordered to be re-sprayed.
Please spread the word to family and friends. Let them know the truth. The State claims this is a training event, but we know this was not training. Randy, and his shift, were selected purely for retaliatory political reasons. This was not part of some new policy and procedure on pepper spray training; it was an assault. Please support your fellow Correctional Officers by telling Legislators it is not OK for the DOC to assault its employees; tell them this was not re-training. (click here for help finding your Legislators) Tell them that this is not what Alaska is all about; we do not apply corporal punishment to political adversaries with State resources.
No one can say State Officials were unaware of what was happening to Randy and his shift over the years. Click here for a summary of e-mails and letters sent to State official over the last 5 years. Also click here to read the statement read by the Officers before being pepper sprayed. No one can say these Officers volunteered or consented to be sprayed.
Below are some of the news stories that ran on the lawsuit. Commissioner Schmidt and his administration are likely to retaliate with personal attacks on Randy and all Correctional Officers for calling them out on this assault. Please read the linked documents throughout this email and be prepared to defend Randy and each other.