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Sun Investigates

Former Baltimore police officer loses quest to regain job after towing scandal

A former Baltimore police officer who went to prison for his role in a towing scandal has lost his quest to get his job back, according to a ruling from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

In his complaint to the federal commission, David Reeping, who is white, contended that investigators used him as a scapegoat — targeting him to avoid accusations of racial profiling from Hispanic and African-American officers. The scandal netted about 60 officers between 2009 and 2011, leading to 16 convictions and numerous suspensions.

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The commission ruled that there "is insufficient evidence to establish unlawful discrimination" and that Reeping was fired only after he signed a written plea agreement for extortion in March 2012. The department fired three other white officers convicted in the scam, the ruling noted.

Reeping has appealed the ruling.

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As part of the towing scam, officers illegally channeled the owners of broken-down and damaged vehicles to Majestic Auto Repair in Rosedale in exchange for cash, according to federal court records. In some cases, officers falsified police reports and even added damage to cars to boost the amounts that could be claimed from insurance companies.

Reeping, an officer from 2007 to 2011, served eight months at the Federal Correctional Institution Terre Haute, a minimum-security camp in Indiana.

mpuente@baltsun.com


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