A police lieutenant in Washington, D.C., with ties to right-wing organizations, was recently suspended from his job after allegedly passing intel to the far-right extremists, Proud Boys.
According to The Washington Post, the officer has been identified as top-ranking police 22-year veteran officer, Shane Lamond. Law enforcement officials have confirmed that there is "suggesting communications between Lamond and Henry 'Enrique' Tarrio, who described himself as the former chairman of the group."
Speaking to reporters at a recent news conference, D.C. Police Chief Robert Contee III said "only that a member of the department had been placed on administrative leave during an 'ongoing investigation' being conducted by his department, the FBI and the Department of Justice."
However, Contee did not offer in-depth details about the investigative findings as the probe will be ongoing. Anonymous inside sources also echoed similar remarks.
In a statement defending his client, Tarrio's attorney Jeffrey Feiler pushed back against the latest reports highlighting the Proud Boys leader's ongoing relationship with law enforcement. Per The Post, he also said Tarrio “worked in an undercover capacity in a case involving information pertaining to an illegal immigrant smuggling ring and, again at his own risk, in an undercover role met and negotiated to pay $11,000 to members of that ring to bring in fictitious family members of his from another country.”
When contacted about the latest controversy, Tarrio also dismissed the allegations suggesting that his relationship with Lamond was strictly professional, “He was just a liaison officer for when we held rallies,” Tarrio said of Lamond.
He went on to criticize investigators saying, “They’re just trying to get anybody at this point. I only told him, ‘We’re coming into town and we’re going to hold this protest.’ That’s as far as the relationship went.”
The latest developments follow concerns from local activists who previously complained about the D.C. law enforcement agency's questionable ties to the Proud Boys "pointing to fist-bumps seen between members, officers posing for photos with Proud Boys and some police turning away as members destroyed Black Lives Matters signs," The Post noted. However, the police department has denied the accusation.