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Leopold: Correcting the record on security detail | READER COMMENTARY

Laura Neuman served as county executive in Anne Arundel County from 2013 to 2014. File. (Robert K. Hamilton/Baltimore Sun).
Laura Neuman served as county executive in Anne Arundel County from 2013 to 2014. File. (Robert K. Hamilton/Baltimore Sun). (Robert K. Hamilton, Baltimore Sun)

The recent letter to the editor by my appointed successor, Laura Neuman, requires a response (”Neuman: I had a plan to reform executive security detail,” Jan. 12).

Ms. Neuman refers to a “covert camera network in the county ... monitored by Mr. Leopold’s office.” For the record, the installation of the cameras preceded my administration and reportedly was done in the Arundel Center to address the theft of computers and the personal belongings of county employees. I never requested or viewed a security camera report.

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There was no published account of either the investigation by former Commissioner Fred Bealefeld or the one by Deputy Chief William Lowry of my request in January 2011 for an audit of inflated security detail overtime or of the strong police resentment of my efforts to repeal police binding arbitration and require pay cuts during the recession.

While formalizing rules and standards for security details is a long-overdue correction, real reform requires the ability to overcome the stiff resistance of police officers to public oversight.

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John R. Leopold, Pasadena

The writer, a Republican, served as county executive in Anne Arundel County from 2006 to 2013.

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