Following a series of allegations, a Maine State Police investigation found that its 2019 Trooper of the Year did not engage in racial profiling during traffic stops that lead to drug charges.
The Maine State Police’s Office of Professional Standards, in consultation with the attorney general’s office, examined more than 1,000 of Trooper John Darcy’s traffic stops and found no evidence or patterns of racial profiling, according to Shannon Moss, spokeperson for the Maine State Police.
“Our agency also requires that persons are only stopped or detained when legal authority exists to do so and that members of our agency base their enforcement actions solely on a person’s conduct and behavior or specific suspect information,” Moss said.
Allegations of Darcy’s racial profiling became public last fall after the U.S. attorney’s office dropped criminal charges against a Black man the trooper pulled over in August 2019.
Darcy can be heard in a Maine State Police video of that traffic stop saying the driver looked “like a thug” because “he’s wearing a wifebeater” and “he’s got dreads.” He is then heard telling the other trooper in the cruiser that he is not racially profiling the driver, the Portland Press Herald reported.
In February, state Rep. Jeffrey Evangelos, an independent from Friendship, asked Maine Department of Public Safety Commissioner Michael Sauschuck to investigate whether Darcy had engaged in racial profiling during traffic stops that led to drug charges and alleged that he got the Trooper of the Year Award as a rebuke to the Black Lives Matter Movement.
Sauschuck later told Evangelos that the allegations regarding the award “were not substantiated.”