Archive for Wednesday, November 7, 2001

Police probe answers needed

November 7, 2001

It has been more than a month since the "Bennett Investigation" report was given to the Baldwin City Council. The report outlined what special counsel Mark Bennett, the Kansas Bureau of Investigation and the Kansas Highway Patrol discovered about allegations against the Baldwin City Police Department.

Well, what did the investigation find?

The only public comment from city officials was that criminal allegations were unfounded and that policies and procedures would be changed as a result of the probe. That was the first comment, which was quickly rescinded by the city council when it was learned that the KHP hadn't finished the investigation into alleged misuse of a nation-wide computer system used by law enforcement.

When that report was complete, it revealed that an infraction had indeed occurred, although no criminal charges were brought. The police department was suspended from use of the computer for a month and required to take additional training as a result of the infraction.

But what about the policies and procedures that need to be changed? As of yet, there has been no public discussion regarding those items.

Baldwin residents want to have confidence in the police force. In order for that to happen, they need to know what was going wrong and how it's being fixed.

Otherwise, the thousands of dollars spent on conducting the probe will not have been money well spent.

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