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|Member of the Missouri House of Representatives
from the 113th district
March 30, 1965 |
St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.
|Alma mater||Missouri Baptist University
University of Missouri-St. Louis
Jeffrey Roorda was a Democratic member of the Missouri House of Representatives, serving from 2005 to 2010 and again from 2013 to 2015. Roorda ran for the Missouri Senate in District 22 in 2014, but he was defeated by Paul Wieland, a Republican from Imperial. A former police officer, he is also the executive director and business manager of the St. Louis Police Officers Association (SLPOA). SLPOA is Lodge #68 of the Fraternal Order of Police, covering the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department (SLMPD). Another union, the Ethical Society of Police (ESOP), represents Black officers.
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Jeff Roorda was born in St. Louis, Missouri on March 30, 1965, the oldest of two sons. He lived in St. Louis with his parents and younger brother until he was twelve years old when Roorda's family moved to Arnold, a St. Louis suburb in Jefferson County, Missouri. Roorda graduated from Windsor High School in Jefferson County. Roorda received an associate degree in Criminal Justice from Jefferson College in Hillsboro, Missouri and later went on to earn his bachelor's degree from Missouri Baptist University and his Masters in Public Policy Administration from University of Missouri - St. Louis. Roorda married his wife Nancy in 1994. They have three daughters.
Roorda has worked in law enforcement for seventeen years. He was a police officer in Arnold, Missouri until 2001, when he was fired for making false statements and filing false reports. Later, he became chief of police in Kimmswick, another city in Jefferson County. He is the executive director and a business manager of the St. Louis Police Officers Association.
Roorda was elected to the Missouri House of Representatives in 2004 as a Democrat in district 102, representing the Imperial, Missouri area. He won a three-way primary by 83 votes and then defeated Republican Marvin Lutes with 50.86% of the vote in the general election. In 2006, Roorda won a rematch with Lutes, garnering 60% of the vote. He won a third term unopposed in 2008.. In 2010, Roorda was defeated by Republican Paul Wieland, who won 50.3% of the vote in a three-way race.
On January 16, 2014, Roorda sponsored a bill that, if passed, will allow the government to close "any records and documents pertaining to police shootings [...] if they contain the name of any officer who did the shooting, unless the officer who did the shooting has been charged with a crime as a result of the shooting, in which case such records or documents shall not be closed."
SLPOA business manager
Roorda said the St. Louis Police Officers Association has had concerns about dashboard cameras in use on many city patrol cars and would have the same worries about on-body devices. Roorda said both types of cameras provide video of “one angle of an encounter” that sometimes doesn’t reflect exactly what happened. “In general, cameras have been bad for law enforcement and the communities they protect,” he said. “It causes constant second-guessing by the courts and the media.”
In January 2015, Roorda, wearing an "I am Darren Wilson" bracelet, was involved in a fracas at a meeting of the Board of Aldermen of the City of St. Louis when he had a run-in with a woman as he was approaching and arguing with the aldermen. The woman alleges minor injuries and the union removed Roorda as its spokesperson on matters regarding a proposed Civilian Oversight Board, about which the aforementioned meeting was hearing public testimony. In August 2016 the St. Louis County Police Association terminated its contract with Roorda as business manager, although he continued with the St. Louis city police union. The woman who Roorda allegedly assaulted in 2015 in December 2016 filed a lawsuit against him and in February 2017 the SLPOA was added to the suit.
Leading St. Louis mayoral candidate Lyda Krewson in February 2017 called for Roorda to be fired as city police union representative following an inflammatory and racially-tinged personal attack against mayoral candidate Tishaura Jones. Jones and other candidates had previously called for the ouster of Roorda.
After Michael Brown shooting in Ferguson
Roorda has helped with the fundraising for Darren Wilson, the Ferguson police officer who was under investigation for the controversial killing of Michael Brown, and Roorda repeatedly publicly defended Wilson. Roorda demanded an apology from the NFL following a public display of protest by several members of the St. Louis Rams. Late in 2015 a controversial book by Roorda, Ferghanistan: The War on Police, was released with a "generous" portion of the profits promised to Wilson. Roorda in July 2016 was sharply criticized by the Ethical Society of Police, Alder Cara Spencer, and others for an incendiary graphic and remarks about the shooting of officers in Dallas.
- "ROORDA v. THE CITY OF ARNOLD". FindLaw. Retrieved September 2, 2014.
- Jeff Roorda bio page, Missouri House of Representatives, http://www.house.mo.gov/member.aspx?district=113&year=2014, Accessed 6-28-17
- Faughn, Scott (April 25, 2013). "Roorda off to strong start in Senate District 22". The Missouri Times. Retrieved November 19, 2013.
- King, Shaun (Jul 7, 2016). "Black police union in St. Louis releases scathing evaluation of their own department, call for the resignation of Police Chief Sam Dotson". New York Daily News.
- "Jeff Roorda". jeffroorda.org. Archived from the original on September 3, 2014.
- "Ferguson fundraiser mystery solved -- or is it?". Los Angeles Times. September 2, 2014. Retrieved September 2, 2014.
- Lippmann, Rachael (Feb 16, 2017). "Krewson demands St. Louis police union fire Roorda over Facebook post". St. Louis Public Radio.
- Schlinkmann, Mark. "New Melle, Crystal City and Troy, Mo., may buy 'body cameras' for police officers". 23 February 2014. St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved September 3, 2014.
- Kaste, Martin (August 28, 2014). "Zero-Tolerance Policing Is Not Racism, Say St. Louis-Area Cops". National Public Radio. Retrieved September 3, 2014.
- Jefferson County Missouri clerk, election results, August and November 2004, http://www.jeffcomo.org/ElectionResults2000-2009.aspx?nodeID=ElectionResults, Accessed 6-28-17
- Jefferson County Missouri clerk, election results, November 2006, http://www.jeffcomo.org/ElectionResults2000-2009.aspx?nodeID=ElectionResults, Accessed 6-28-17
- Jefferson County Missouri clerk, election results, November 2008, http://www.jeffcomo.org/ElectionResults2000-2009.aspx?nodeID=ElectionResults, Accessed 6-28-17
- Jefferson County Missouri clerk, election results, November 2010, http://www.jeffcomo.org/ElectionResults2010-2019.aspx?nodeID=ElectionResults, Accessed 6-28-17
- Peters, Jonathan (June 12, 2014). "Allowing police to shoot someone without creating a record you can see". Columbia Journalism Review. Retrieved September 2, 2014.
- Boehm, Eric (August 15, 2014). "Missouri Lawmaker Tried to Restrict Public Info on Police Shootings". Newsmax. Retrieved September 2, 2014.
- "HB 1466". openstates.org. The Sunlight Foundation. Retrieved September 2, 2014.
- Swaine, Jon (29 Jan 2015). "St Louis Police Official Unapologetic after Pushing Woman at Public Meeting". The Guardian. Retrieved 2015-02-16.
- Lippmann, Rachel (Jan 29, 2015). "Chaos At Hearing On Civilian Oversight Bill Highlights Ongoing Divisions Between Police, Community". St. Louis Public Radio. Retrieved 2015-02-16.
- Toler, Lindsay (Feb 2, 2015). "Woman Files Assault Complaint Against Police Union Rep Jeff Roorda After City Hall Brawl". Riverfront Times. Retrieved 2015-02-16.
- Byers, Christine (Feb 16, 2015). "Controversial St. Louis Police Union Leader Muzzled When it Comes to Civilian Review". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved 2015-02-16.
- Mathis-Lilley, Ben (Jan 29, 2015). "Controversial St. Louis Police Rep Involved in Scuffle at Civilian Oversight Hearing". Slate. Retrieved 2015-01-29.
- Byers, Christine (Aug 26, 2016). "St. Louis County police group to sever ties with business manager". St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
- Wicentowksi, Danny (Feb 17, 2017). "Jeff Roorda and Police Union Hit With Lawsuit Over Shoving Incident". Riverfront Times.
- Messenger, Tony (Feb 18, 2017). "The Fire Roorda bandwagon grows -- St. Louis cops deserve a better voice.". St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
- Wicentowksi, Danny (Jan 30, 2017). "In Debate, Mayoral Candidates Grapple With Jeff Roorda — and Their Own Histories". Riverfront Times.
- Briquelet, Kate (Aug 12, 2015). "‘Ferghanistan’ Author: I’m Giving the Profits to Darren Wilson". The Daily Beast. Retrieved 2015-12-14.
- Fenske, Sarah (Jul 8, 2016). "St. Louis Police Union Spokesman Jeff Roorda Blames Dallas Tragedy on Barack Obama". Riverfront Times.