Powerful Miami Police couple fight to keep their jobs
Three days before Miami Police Chief Art Acevedo was officially sworn in, he drew a line in the sand to city command staff: “You lie, you die,” the new chief warned, suggesting that changes would occur within the department.
That same morning, Nerly Papier, one of the top-ranked policewomen in town, a cop who grew up in the department working as a temp to become commander of Little Havana NET, hit a sidewalk with her town show. SUV. She punctured two tires and then continued to drive the vehicle, damaging her rims on her way to the office.
Today, Papier and her husband Ronald Papier, deputy town leader and interim leader for two months during the transition to Acevedo, are fighting to keep their jobs. The couple were suspended two weeks after Acevedo was sworn in on April 2. In mid-May, an Internal Affairs investigation recommended that they be fired for failing to follow the proper chain of command after the SUV crash.
And despite the city’s refusal to say whether others have been punished for their alleged involvement in the Nerly Papier crash, the Miami Herald has learned that seven other officers – almost all of whom have anything to do with the accident and its consequences – received written reprimands.
The city has also denied requests for information in public records or any documents regarding the decision to end the Papers, including copies of recommended terminations of an internal affairs investigation that the city has spoken about publicly.
Still, the Miami Herald has learned that the Internal Affairs recommended ousting Nerly Papier stems from the actions she took during and after the incident and her explanation of what happened, which investigators say. , does not correspond to their conclusions.
Why her husband is on the chopping block remains uncertain. After taking office, Acevedo expressed the wish that Internal Affairs would report directly to him. Prior to its suspension, that had been Papier’s work for most of the past decade.
In the letter of reprimand from Nerly Papier of Home Affairs, investigators determined that she had repeatedly faked the truth, never admitted there were pedestrians on the sidewalk when her SUV drove down the sidewalk and did not mention that she had turned on two red lights on her way to the station after the accident. The report also states that Nerly Papier told the property commander that she had two flat tires and never mentioned that she had an accident.
The document also mentions Acevedo’s April 2 statement to the general staff on the veracity and says that the commander’s “poor judgment” limits his ability to “function as an effective commander.”
Acevedo’s statement was “a clear warning to all staff and junior officers that dishonesty and lack of judgment in the police will not be tolerated under his administration,” the investigating officer wrote in the note recommendation. disciplinary. “Chief Acevedo further informed everyone present, including Commander Papier, that if he finds out that any of his officers are violating a sacred trust, community standard or betraying the MPD badge, his career is at stake. . ”
The Herald was unable to obtain the internal affairs document recommending the dismissal of Deputy Chief Ronald Papier.
Miami’s most senior cop couple have hired Fraternal Order of the Police attorney Eugene Gibbons to represent them. Gibbons demands that the city heed a request for the Papier to remain in the force, but as captains. This would allow them to keep most or all of their benefits at reduced wages.
Gibbons said the couple have had remarkable careers without a history of disciplinary action. He won’t go into details of the claims against the deputy chief, but said Nerly Papier informed everyone in his chain of command about the incident, including senior officers.
âIt’s pretty obvious the leader doesn’t want them in his upper echelon,â Gibbons said. “It is absolute nonsense of what they are accused of.”
Earlier this week, the city’s Civil Service Council accepted a hearing in which the couple will advocate for the right to remain in the department, but as captains. They were scheduled to appear before the police department’s disciplinary review committee on Friday., an audience that Gibbons said he disagreed with as it is currently made up of people appointed by Acevedo.
âThese claims are far-fetched and unsubstantiated,â Gibbons said.
Acevedo, reached by phone on Friday, declined to comment on the case before reading the Disciplinary Review Committee report. He said he expects to make a decision on the Papers by next week.