Captain gave another reason for taping prosecutor in Geer case, e-mail shows
By Tom Jackman August 21
An e-mail sent by the Fairfax County police captain who secretly taped a conversation with a Fairfax prosecutor handling the police shooting of John Geer in 2013 appears to provide a different explanation for why the taping happened. The transcript of the tape shows that Capt. Darrin Day argued about the law with the chief deputy Fairfax County commonwealth’s attorney and was concerned that releasing prior internal affairs files of Officer Adam Torres “could be prejudicial to the officer.”
The tape was provided to the lawyers for Geer’s family in February as part of their civil suit against Fairfax police Chief Edwin C. Roessler for the August 29, 2013, killing of Geer. Though Fairfax prosecutors were unable to obtain the internal affairs files for Torres, a Fairfax judge ordered them to be produced in the civil case. The police then had to notify Fairfax Commonwealth’s Attorney Raymond F. Morrogh that Day, as an internal affairs captain, had surreptitiously taped a six-minute conversation with chief deputy prosecutor Casey M. Lingan in November 2013 where the police first indicated they would not release the Torres files.
The police continued to refuse to provide the files to the prosecutor, though they had done so in prior police shootings, leading to a year-long delay which was broken by the disclosures in the civil case. A grand jury indicted Torres this week for second-degree murder.
A police spokesman said on Thursday after speaking with Day that he had taped the conversation with Lingan “to replace the taking of handwritten notes with the recorder.” But an e-mail Day sent to internal affairs in January, and obtained by The Post, shows that Day “started the recording shortly after our call started because I did not like the way it was going.”
The spokesman, Capt. Edward O’Carroll, said Friday that he stood by his previous explanation of Day’s reason for taping and that no ill will toward the prosecutors was intended. He said no internal discipline was sought against Day because the taping was not a violation of department policy, though the police have since instituted a standard operating procedure discouraging the practice. (It is legal under Virginia law.)