Young: Former police helicopter pilot was “whistleblower”

Baltimore City Council President Bernard C. “Jack” Young has made a habit recently of voting against settlements for police misconduct lawsuits, saying that better training would prevent many of the costly suits.

But Young voted for the $245,000 settlement for former police helicopter pilot Samuel K. Miller that was approved unanimously at Wednesday’s Board of Estimates meeting. Miller had accused his superiors in the Aviation Unit of ostracizing him and tricking him into resigning in 2007 after he wrote a letter that detailed waste and misuse of the unit’s resources, including a “dog and pony show” helicopter landing at the school of the unit commander’s children.

After voting with his colleagues to approve Miller’s settlement, Young called Miller a “whistleblower.”

“I respect that,” Young said. “He should not have been disciplined or lost his job because of that.”

Young voted against a $45,000 settlement for Rodney Hueston, whose lawsuit alleged officers Anthony S. Weems and Renard D. Owens broke his left arm during an unlawful arrest in 2009. Charges of resisting arrest, disorderly conduct and possession of an open container of alcohol were dropped against Hueston after he was treated for his injuries.

Hueston’s settlement was approved despite Young’s “No” vote.