Jenkins says Hagen interfered with a ‘lawful traffic stop.’
Frederick, Md (KM) It was a confrontation Wednesday between Frederick County Sheriff Chuck Jenkins and Councilman Kai Hagen. The two squared off on WFMD’s “Mid-Maryland Live” over a traffic stop a few weeks ago.
The Sheriff says on Sunday evening, June 20th, a deputy initiated a traffic stop along Route 806 at Black Mills Road in the Thurmont area. He says the vehicle had a trailer tag. He says a second car pulled up, and the deputy thought he was going to be ambushed. It turned out the driver was Councilman Hagen. He was told the leave the area three or four times, according to Sheriff Jenkins.
Councilman Hagen called in, and said he stopped because he noticed the motorist who was pulled over was Black. The conversation went like this:
“So you’re telling me that reason you came back is because the driver of the vehicle is African-American or Black,” the Sheriff asked.
“That was a consideration,” Hagen responded.
The Sheriff said, “you explain why.”
To which Hagen said “Because there are concerns.” The Sheriff interrupted by saying “bull—!.” :
“You’ going to ask me but you’re not going to let me answer,” Hagen said.
“You answer because you don’t have an answer,” The Sheriff replied.
Hagen said there is systemic racism in law enforcement locally and nationally. The Sheriff denied that. Here’s how that conversation went.
“The statistics show that is in fact not true,” Hagen said.
“Kai, if there’s a racist on the line, it’s you, my friend,” Jenkins responded.
The Sheriff said Hagen was interfering with a “lawful traffic stop,” and he send e-mails to Council President MC Keegan-Ayer to see something could be done. Hagen said he was “careful and polite” to the deputy, and when he was assured that everything was all right, Hagen says he left.
The conversation went in another direction:
“You are an embarrassment to Frederick County and the County Council,” the Sheriff said. “The problem is the Council can’t reel you in. They can’t control you. But guess what? If they refuse to do anything, this is my route. This is the way I have to go with it.”
Hagen replied; “You’ve called us all, a number of us, radical extremists, socialists, etc. You don’t think there’s any such thing, and you’re willing to say it over and over again,” referring to systemic racism.
The discussion then turned to charter government, with Hagen saying it’s worked very well in Frederick County, and the Sheriff calling it “a total disaster.”
The driver who pulled over was given two warnings by the deputy.
By Kevin McManus