Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County in the case of Joseph M. McGlone v. City of Philadelphia, No. 3634, January Term, 1985.
Regina B. Guerin, for appellant.
Susan Shinkman, Divisional Deputy City Solicitor, with her, Valerie West, Chief Assistant City Solicitor, for appellee.
Judges Colins and Palladino, and Senior Judge Kalish, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Colins.
[ 112 Pa. Commw. Page 206]
Joseph McGlone (appellant) appeals an order of the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County which
[ 112 Pa. Commw. Page 207]
affirmed the Civil Service Commission's (Commission) dismissal of appellant from the Philadelphia Police Department (Department). We reverse.
On January 6, 1984, James T. McFadden, Commanding Officer of the Sixth Police District, wrote a memorandum to the Police Personnel Office requesting that appellant be scheduled for a psychiatric evaluation. This request was based on the Commander's belief that appellant's actions and demeanor of the previous months had been erratic resulting in appellant's inability to interact with fellow officers. Appellant was notified by Leonard Leibowitz, the Police Department Personnel Officer, that his irrational behavior was the basis for the request of the examination. This request was eventually approved by the Police Commissioner. Appellant failed to appear as ordered for the scheduled January 20, 1984 examination.
Appellant believed that the ordered psychiatric evaluation was improper and not in accordance with Police Directive 109,*fn1 thus a violation of local agency law. A meeting between Department officials and appellant's counsel was arranged. The result of the meeting was a determination by Department officials that the deviation from the directive was de minimis and that the directive had not been violated. Appellant was then informed that the order was still in effect and he was expected to fully comply with such order. Appellant was removed from active duty and told not to report for duty without clearance from a city psychiatrist. As a result of this action, appellant was forced to exhaust his paid leave and then placed on leave of absence without pay. Furthermore, appellant was informed that if he wished to remain a police officer, he must request a formal
[ 112 Pa. Commw. Page 208]
leave of absence. Notwithstanding this admonition appellant did not do so and, by not having psychiatric clearance, was dismissed from the force on January 19, 1984.
On January 9, 1985, the Commission denied appellant's appeal of his separation. The Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County affirmed the Commission in its October 16, 1985 order and opinion. This appeal follows.
In this opinion, we must decide whether a Philadelphia Police Department directive requiring mandatory psychiatric evaluations of police officers exhibiting erratic behavior patterns is violative of due process and, if not, has the directive ...