Groomes on Cheating: “I Did What I Did”
Assistant Chief Dianne Groomes was at the center of the allegations that Metropolitan Police Department officers cheated on mandatory exams last year. And now she's got something to say about it: She did it.
Groomes says she tried to help some police brass pass a 50-question test whose deadline was imminent.
That seems to contradict a statement Police Chief Cathy Lanier made to The Washington Post while clearing the popular Groomes of any wrongdoing in December: "Lanier said her decision came after an internal investigation concluded that Groomes did not 'compromise' the test. Rather, the internal probe found that the exam was an open-book test. 'No official obtained or shared the answer key,' Lanier said."
But Groomes says she certainly did compromise the test; she compromised the heck out of it. "I printed out the answers, and I sent them out," she says. "I sent it to them and said, 'Handle it.'"
Groomes says the answer sheet she used was available to her because she'd already taken the online exam. Even after City Desk gave Groomes an out by repeating the open-book test defense, the cop wouldn't take it: "Like I said, I did what I did."
She shouldn't have, she realizes, but Groomes sometimes doesn't think: "I react sometimes. I'm impulsive. I just react."
Groomes, who's ready to move on, says she was disciplined for her wrongdoing. "I know a lot of people think, 'You didn't get a reprimand in your jacket,'" she says. "I received an 'adverse action.'" An "adverse action" can be a demotion, a suspension, or a cut in pay.
Groomes says Commander Matthew Klein, who left his command post in the Second District around the time Groomes returned to her position as his superior, turned her in. "I guess he's very, very ethical," Groomes says of Klein.
Klein hasn't returned calls for comment.
Photo by Darrow Montgomery