Last month's Washington Post editorial criticizing the Prince George's County Police Department for its handling of a 2010 student beating case was "exaggerated and misleading," Police Chief Mark Magaw wrote in a letter published Sunday.
Magaw's submission came in response to a Dec. 28 piece ("Prince George’s police get away with a beating") in which the editorial board condemned two officers caught on tape hitting University of Maryland student John J. McKenna in College Park.
The incident occurred during the unruly aftermath of a victory over Duke by the UMD men's basketball team.
But the board reserved its harshest criticism for those who oversaw the official response to the incident, accusing the PGPD of engaging "in a conspiracy of silence and coverup."
"In the end, one of the officers got off scot-free; the other was given a slap on the wrist; and no higher-ups in the police department were called to account," the editorial read.
In reply, Magaw wrote that the Post had misrepresented the department's response, arguing that the incident "served to define a future of shared responsibility for our police department and the University of Maryland."
"What happened to John J. McKenna was wrong. The involved police officers were identified, indicted and prosecuted," Magaw said, outlining several of the investigative and procedural steps taken by the PGPD after the beating.
"Our shared commitment of mutual accountability is anything but indifferent," he added.