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The situations was that I did not perform an arrest for a crime that I didn not observe. I am now being disciplined for "failure to serve the public". As a law enforcement officer, I can only arrest if I observe the crime, have a warrant, or there is evidence of domestic violence. They state that I should have recommended that the victim place the suspect under citizen's arrest. There is no policy stating that we should suggest citizen's arrest and in fact, the MS Attorney General's opinion states the preferred method is the victim pursue charges at the municipal or justice court.
I should add too that the crime was only witnessed by a 14 year old, not by the mother. My employer feels I should have recommended the mother place him under citizen's arrest even though she did not observed the crime.
There is no to address whether law enforcement suggests citizen's arrest. The law only states that citizen's may place someone under citizen's arrest for crimes committed in their presence or when a there is a threat of the disturbing the peace. The attorney general is of the opinion that the officer doesn't even have to custody of someone being placed under citizen's arrest. (leaving it up to officer discretion based on probable cause). I am being suspended for at least 1 week without pay as a result of this discipline.
Thank you for your time. I keep referring to the AG opinions because there aren't any state laws that address anything of this nature. The state law only states that a citizen may perform a citizen's arrest, but nothing about whether law enforcement should suggest or take custody of such. It's just silly that an employer can do this with no threat of recourse. I guess legal action isn't appropriate in this matter. Again, Thank you for your time and help. Have a good day.
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