Police union sues LMPD

Louisville Metro Police Department
Louisville Metro Police Department(WAVE News)
Published: Mar. 22, 2023 at 6:52 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - The union representing Louisville Metro Police Officers is suing the department.

The lawsuit was filed in early March and pertains to violations of confidentiality within a peer support group designed to help officers through trauma or mental health issues.

The River City Fraternal Order of Police claims at least one major relayed information to other members of the department that was supposed to remain private.

The peer support group is made up of fellow officers. The confidentiality terms, designed for officers to feel comfortable seeking help, is part of the department’s policies.

According to those documents, those terms can only be broken if the information is related to a possible crime, a threat to others or imminent threats of suicide.

The court documents describe the infraction as an issue related to a hostile work environment, something out of the scope of reportable information.

“The confidential information used by LMPD concerned suspected harassment and/or hostile work environment issues that occurred years prior to the peer counseling session and that the peer support participant did not want to be made public,” the lawsuit states.

A lack of mental health resources for LMPD Officers has been a major worry and point of contention, with officers stating they have nowhere safe to turn to or confide in.

The department does have a certified counselor, not a psychologist, on staff. However, LMPD is being sued by a former homicide detective who says that counselor was relaying confidential information to his superiors too.

The Louisville Metro Police Foundation has recently stepped up to fill the mental health deficiencies at LMPD. The organization which is a separate entity than the department is establishing a wellness center for officers to include resources related to mental health.

The lawsuit asks that any internal investigations based on the information obtained through the peer support group be dismissed.

LMPD is reviewing our request for comment about the lawsuit.