Officer forced to shave humiliated

Jan. 27, 2011 at 2:26 PM

BALTIMORE, Jan. 27 (UPI) -- A Baltimore police officer filed a lawsuit alleging he was injured and humiliated when superiors ordered him to shave in front of colleagues.

Anthony L. Brown, 51, an 18-year Baltimore Police Department veteran, was given the shaving order hours before he would be on duty as part of the Warrant Apprehension Task Force to maintain safety for President-elect Barack Obama as he stopped in Baltimore on Jan. 17, 2009, on his way to his inauguration in Washington, The Baltimore Sun reported Wednesday.

Although shaving orders had been given several days earlier, Brown brought a letter from his dermatologist saying Brown had a skin condition precluding his shaving more frequently than every few days. The doctor's note was ignored, and Brown shaved to the best of his ability on Jan. 17, but the order from Sgt. Allen Adkins and Lt. John Windle for Brown to shave -- without water or a mirror -- before the other officers was given the same day, the Sun reported.

Brown has sued the city, the police department and supervisors for $17 million, alleging "tremendous humiliation, embarrassment and mental anguish," as well as aggravation of his skin condition, which resulted in "tremendous physical pain, discomfort and disfigurement."

Brown further alleges his complaints resulted in poor performance evaluations, withdrawal of overtime opportunities and discrimination against him based on his medical condition.

Brown said he retired "reluctantly" on Aug. 13, 2009.

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