Arbitrator Upholds City of Cleveland, Department of Public Safety’s Decision to Terminate Four Officers for Consuming Alcohol on Duty, Falsifying Police Documents

On October 19, 2021, an Arbitrator upheld the City of Cleveland, Department of Public Safety’s decision to terminate four Cleveland Police Officers who were found guilty of consuming alcohol while on duty and of falsifying police documents. According to the terms of the parties’ collective-bargaining agreement and the Arbitrator’s decision, the Cleveland Police Patrolmen’s Association shall be required to pay the Arbitrator’s fees.

In 2019, then Cleveland Department of Public Safety Director Michael McGrath announced that the four Cleveland Police Officers had been terminated from employment following an internal investigation which began after it was discovered that the officers were consuming alcohol within a liquor establishment outside of the city of Cleveland while on duty and in uniform. In the course of the investigation it was also found that the officers had falsified police documents (duty reports).

Matthew Dates, John Jarrell, Kevin Kiesner and Anthony Miranda were assigned to Basic Patrol in the Fourth District at the time of the incident. Once information regarding the matter was discovered, all four officers were placed on restricted duty. An internal investigation was conducted by the Cleveland Division of Police, Internal Affairs Unit. Findings of the investigation were forwarded to the Chief of police for review and then submitted to the office of the Director of Public Safety for final discipline. All four officers were terminated effective June 18, 2020.

A combined arbitration hearing regarding all four former city police officers took place over multiple days between December of 2020 and March of 2021.