ROCKVILLE, Md. – Montgomery County police are furious that outgoing Chief Charles Moose used a photograph of himself wearing a black mourning band over his badge for the cover of his disputed new book about the Beltway sniper investigation he led.
Moose book cover
The head of the police union says the band was a “shameless” ploy to gain sympathy with the rank-and-file, who resent the chief for withholding the physical descriptions of the sniper suspects from them during last October’s manhunt.
Moose resigned today so he could profit from the sale of his book, “Three Weeks in October: The Manhunt for the Serial Sniper,” penned by author Charles Fleming. County ethics rules barred him from such outside projects.
The cover of the 366-page book, pictured on Amazon.com, shows Moose wearing a police shield with a black band across the middle.
“That picture is gonna piss off cops,” said Montgomery County Fraternal Order of Police President Walter Bader. “That black band on his badge is what you wear when a police officer is killed. He’s trying to make himself look sympathetic to cops, but cops are going to resent that because of his position on officer safety and cashing in on the blood of victims” with his book.
Thirteen people were shot during the sniper rampage, 10 fatally.
“He’s trying to look like he’s one of the guys,” Bader added. “It’s shameless. Out of the hundreds of cops who worked on this case, only one is trying to cash in.”
During contract negotiations early this year, the police union complained that Moose withheld information about the sniper suspects, both black, from detectives and patrol officers while trying to completely rule out white suspects.
Bader demanded management add to the contract a safety provision requiring Moose to relay look-out information on future dangerous suspects as soon as he gets it. The union got the clause written into the contract over Moose’s vocal objections.
Moose claims he learned of no solid suspects until Oct. 23 – the day before John Allen Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo were caught.
But as WorldNetDaily first reported, Moose secretly dispatched a team of undercover officers to stake out the home of alleged sniper Muhammad’s ex-wife on Oct. 22 – a full 24 hours before he released a look-out bulletin with his and Malvo’s descriptions.
What’s more, headquarters learned from at least one witness that the sniper suspects were black and driving a dark sedan from the very first shot fired – on Oct. 2.
As WorldNetDaily also first reported on March 28 and April 1, Montgomery County Detective Chris Homrock
took a statement from witness Steve Cribbin, an
employee of Papa John’s Pizza located next door to the
Michaels craft store in Aspen Hill, Md., where the
snipers shot out a window. Cribbin said he was
startled by the sound of a rifle shot, and turned and
saw two short-haired black males laughing and “giving
high-fives” to each other as they sped out of the
parking lot in a dark-colored car.
Homrock filed his statement with headquarters, where it was buried. Moose instead focused throughout the manhunt on white suspects driving white box-trucks or vans.
WorldNetDaily has since learned that D.C. detectives reported similar descriptions of the sniper suspects and getaway car as Cribbin, but they also were ignored by Montgomery County police headquarters.