The Washington Post

The Pershing Park ‘running resume’ — found and lost?

Pershing Park today (Mike DeBonis/The Washington Post)

The account comes from a filing that briefly showed up in a federal court record last week. It was pulled after the city objected to U.S. District Judge Emmet G. Sullivan.

In 2009, Officer John Strader found a binder marked “JOCC Activation Running Resume” in the department’s Command Information Center. “JOCC” is an abbreviation for joint operations command center, a sort of “war room” in police headquarters.

Del takes it from here:

Strader knew DC officials had been searching in vain for the “running resume” of the arrests, essentially a detailed log of police action, and now he thought he had discovered it. (He seemed perplexed that the logs were found in that particular cabinet, however. “There were some comments made in the CIC that the book must have been planted ... because it could not have gone unnoticed in that drawer for so many years,” Strader wrote).

Strader, who joined the force in 1994, immediately turned the log over to his superiors, but not before others made clear that they wanted no part in its discovery. One supervisor “put his arms up in the air and pulled back from the table and stated, ‘I don’t want it,’” according to Strader’s written account.

“If I were you,” the supervisor continued, “I would wipe my fingerprints off it and put it in the mail” to the department’s general counsel, Strader wrote.

After turning over the record to a supervisor, Strader’s story became only more bizarre. A few weeks later, he was summoned to the office of Terrence Ryan, the department’s general counsel, where he was shown the book he had discovered. He later took Ryan and another lawyer on a tour of the Command Information Center. He even showed the lawyers where he had discovered the log book, according to the officer’s account.
Nearly two years later on Aug. 1, Strader wrote, he was sorting through files related to the Pershing Park arrests in a conference room when he was approached by Shana Frost, a lawyer for the D.C. Attorney General’s Office. He explained to Frost that he had turned over the log to Ryan and explained what it had looked like. The next day, he was summoned to Ryan’s office and shown another book. There was “no way shape or form” that the book was same one he had turned over a year earlier, Strader wrote.

So what happened to the “running resume” that Strader found? It’s a document that might once and for all determine who gave the orders to wrongly arrest nearly 400 people. Was it then-Chief Charles Ramsey, as several have claimed and the ex-chief has denied? Or another member of police brass?

The documents thus far produced by the police department do not include what Strader claims to have found in his affidavit, provided through the Fraternal Order of Police. The department says there is “no merit to the allegations made by the FOP. The confidential and privileged communications between Officer Strader and attorneys for the District were in an effort to interview a potential witness regarding information provided to them.”

Mike DeBonis covers Congress and national politics for The Washington Post. He previously covered D.C. politics and government from 2007 to 2015.


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