SEABROOK – The Prince George’s County State’s Attorney’s Office announced that a grand guy indicted a Prince George’s County Police Department (PGPD) officer with a charge of a second-degree sexual offense.
Lt. Richard Tallant was charged on Sept. 4 for sexually assaulting a woman while he was off-duty at a social event in Upper Marlboro in February 2017. Police officials said that Tallant knew the woman he assaulted. State’s Attorney Aisha Braveboy said that after an investigation by the Internal Affairs Division of PGPD, her office began working on the case. Once a review of all the evidence was completed, it was presented to the grand jury.
Tallant has been with the department since 1997 and was recently assigned to the Narcotics Enforcement Division. According to police officials, Tallant was stripped of his police powers this past April when PGPD learned of the allegations. Police officials say that Tallant is suspended without pay.
“As State’s Attorney, it is my job to pursue truth and seek justice for all victims of crime,” Braveboy said. “My office will prosecute crimes of sexual assault, no matter the professional status of the offender.”
Bond for Tallent was set at $10,000, according to online court records. The trial is set to begin on Dec. 11.
In the past year, PGPD has been in the news for stories of misconduct by its officers. In Oct. 2018, six-year veteran officer Ryan Macklin was arrested on multiple charges of rape, perverted practice and assault after being accused of attacking an undocumented woman in Langley Park. He was initially suspended but once arrested, Macklin was stripped of his police powers and his badge, gun and car were taken away upon his arrest.
On Aug. 8, Cpl. Stephen Downey was found guilty of two misdemeanor charges of second-degree assault and misconduct in office for punching a man in the face repeatedly while restraining him in handcuffs. Chief Hank Stawinski apologized to the victim and said Downey “does not represent more than 2,000 members of the Prince George’s County Police Department.”
“I don’t think this person has a place in the ranks of the Prince George’s County Police Department,” Stawinski said.
Later on, Officer Ian Lucas pleaded guilty on Aug. 14 in Washington, D.C. to a misdemeanor charge of soliciting a sexual act in an alleged incident on Nov. 10, 2018 with a prostitute. According to PGPD Spokesperson Jennifer Donelan, when the department was alerted of the allegations, they immediately suspended him without pay. As of mid-August, PGPD is still investigating his case and has no timetable to announce if Lucas will stay on the force.
“We do have to wait for the criminal process to go through completion before we can move forward with our administrative portion of our investigation,” Donelan said.
The department has also dealt with multiple allegations of police misconduct and discrimination within the force in a lawsuit filed by the ACLU last December. The lawsuit is still ongoing, according to attorneys working the case.