HARTFORD – The Criminal Justice Commission today appointed Robert Devlin to become Connecticut’s first Inspector General, a new special statewide prosecutor whose mandate, under a law passed in the aftermath of the 2020 uprising for Black lives, is to investigate and prosecute police violence and other police misconduct. Under laws passed by the legislature in 2020 and 2021, the Inspector General is legally required to be independent from other state’s attorneys, including the Chief State’s Attorney, and to have a separate office with its own budget. Prior to today’s Criminal Justice Commission appointment, the ACLU of Connecticut surveyed all four finalists for the role regarding their views on police accountability and systemic racism.
“The Inspector General position is a mandate from the people for Connecticut to begin valuing Black lives by holding police accountable for hurting and killing people. The Inspector General’s role is part of police accountability, and justice will only come when no one is hurt or killed by police,” said Claudine Fox, ACLU of Connecticut public policy and advocacy director. “For the Inspector General to make meaningful progress toward valuing Black lives by holding police accountable for violence, they must be independent from other prosecutors, their office must be fully funded, they must use their legal power to seek redress for people harmed by police, and they must advocate to eliminate the systems that have shielded police from accountability for decades. We hope the first Inspector General will set the tone for all who follow by staunchly advocating for and defending each of these requirements for success. We also know that if we are going to prevent more death and violence at the hands of police, value Black and Brown lives, and create thriving and safe communities, Connecticut must reduce the role, responsibilities, and size of policing.”
“Connecticut’s first Inspector General must be dedicated to valuing Black lives and pursuing police accountability instead of the status quo. Police power is unchecked, and it fuels the mass incarceration of Black and Brown people. We hope Connecticut’s first Inspector General will use their role not only to hold police accountable to the people, but to push for bigger change,” said Will Roberts, an ACLU of Connecticut Smart Justice leader.
The Criminal Justice Commission interviewed four finalists for the position: Liam Brennan, Moira Buckley, Robert Devlin, and A. Ryan McGuigan. All are currently employed outside of the Division of Criminal Justice, after legislation this year clarified that lawmakers intended as wide and independent an applicant pool as possible.
For the ACLU-CT survey responses from all four finalists.