LEONARDTOWN, MD. — Pay roll records provided in a public information request to THE CHESAPEAKE TODAY by the St. Mary’s Sheriff’s Department revealed that Deputy Philip Joseph was punished for firing his gun at a fleeing criminal who was driving on Rt. 5 in Charlotte Hall.
The punishment? Deputy Joseph was ordered to sit around in an administrative leave status, at full pay, the Sheriff’s Department conducted an “investigation”. In the process, Dep. Joseph collected $32,496 in paid administrative leave, for doing absolutely nothing. No work, no light duty, not fired, just an extensive and expensive vacation, courtesy of the taxpayers. The total pay for Dep. Joseph in the 2013 fiscal year was $99,235 with $6,150 in overtime as well.
While St. Mary’s Sheriff Tim Cameron enjoys a privilege, rarely afforded others who have held the post of Sheriff before him, that of being unopposed, there may be more than one would-be Sheriff kicking themselves for not opposing Cameron this year as the Sheriff’s Department reels from one scandal after another.
The past few months have seen the disclosure that Sheriff’s deputies were likely responsible for automatic weapon fire being trained on the Wildewood residential community with some rounds of live ammo blasting into the bedroom of an infant, barely missing the child.
Sheriff Cameron issued a statement saying he was “mortified” at the wild fire by his cops who were blasting away from a nearby farm. The Captain in charge of allowing the deputies to use an unsafe location for their target practice, was suspended for two weeks, meaning he got a two-week paid vacation.
Another Captain was suspended for two weeks, in an effort to curry favor with the group of deputies who provide a nucleus of support for Sheriff Cameron. Capt Terry Black was suspended with a two-week paid vacation for reportedly failing to keep track of overtime of one cop, who reportedly was sitting at home when she filed for overtime.
Sheriff Cameron spent millions of dollars pursuing a new jail and only at the last minute, learned that the jail would have been built on land the county does not own.