Fatmata Barrie, a practicing attorney based in Silver Spring, was unanimously appointed by the subcommittees of the Police Accountability Board and the Administrative Charging Committee as the executive director of the new Montgomery County Police Accountability Board and Administrative Charging Committee.
A Monday county news release stated that Barrie has over “20 years of client-focused and result-centered experience” and has around 30 years of experience in community and civil rights advocacy and organizing, with a focus on civic engagement and coalition building.
Barrie had ran in the Democratic primary race for Montgomery County Council, District 5 on July 19, 2022. She placed second in the primary with 23.6% of the total votes and lost the seat to County Council Member Kristin Mink, who won 42.06% of the votes.
Over the course of her career, Barrie has been affiliated with multiple community organizations and boards such as: the Montgomery County African Affairs Advisory Group (chair), Women’s Democratic Club, Friends of White Oak, the East County Citizens Advisory Board, the National Organization of Sierra Leoneans in North America, the African Immigrant Caucus, the Women of Color Coalition and the Immigrant Community Services. Barrie also founded the community organization, Black Diaspora Voices.
According to the county, the PAB and the ACC were formed to work with various law enforcement agencies and review, advise and report on complaints related to police misconduct and the resulting disciplinary matters.
In a statement in the release, County Executive Marc Elrich stated, “The Police Accountability Board is an important step in the County’s efforts to build public trust around police accountability. I appreciate the board for its dedication to a thorough interview process and selecting Ms. Barrie. I look forward to working with Ms. Barrie to ensure the PAB and ACC are successful in their legislative mandated mission.”
Barrie has a law degree from the University of Florida’s Levin College of Law and earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology from Florida A&M University, according to county officials.
She moved to the US from Sierra Leone in West Africa when she was 11 years old and grew up in South Florida, according to the release.
According to the release, as the Montgomery County Council’s senior legislative aide, Barrie looked over “policing, social justice and immigration-related public safety issues.” She also was involved in passing various police reform and civil rights legislation.
“I am excited, and I have enjoyed working with the board and committee members,” said Ms. Barrie in an official statement in the release. “I look forward to working with all stakeholders to ensure that the Police Accountability Board and the Administrative Charging Committee and the process is not only accessible and transparent, but that the goals of the board and committee are met.”
Barrie did not immediately respond to MoCo 360’s request for comment.