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Monday, January 21, 2008

King County Sheriff Officers Update

Here's an update on a post I wrote earlier about two sheriff's deputies being caught falsifying reports:

Some additional details have come to light thanks to a disgruntled King County Sheriff's Deputy who leaked details about internal policy changes in an effort to try and defend the accused officers on a public message board. This deputy states:

Rahr has a new policy. ANY complaint from the public having to do with any KCSO deputy goes straight to Internal Affairs. Bypassing any immediate management. The old policy was that any complaint would first be looked at by that persons immeidate sgt.

This seems to me as though it is a very good policy that fits with the same model most modern police departments use since most corruption spreads by higher ranking corrupt officers promoting and pulling other corrupt officers into their command and demoting or harrassing any good officers who complain about corruption or misconduct. By bypassing immediate commanders when complaints occur, you prevent any corrupt commanders from blocking potentially valid investigations due to favoritism or bias.

While this sheriff's deputy, who is probably using government resources on government time to post opinions and leak internal information on a public message board in an effort to smear her boss, is of the opinion that this process makes officers who are accused guilty until proven innocent, it is clear that officers still have the right to defend themselves and the officer's opinion is that internal investigators are "against them" which is indicative of a corrupt force that views the public and anyone who is not a part of their little group as being the enemy.

Furthermore, the officer's viewpoint ignores the fact that when police officers abuse civilians and detainees that they are treating people as though they are guilty before they have had their chance to defend themselves. Also, when people are branded with an arrest on their record, even when proven innocent in court, they are treated by police as though they were guilty anyway, despite being proved innocent.

So it's clearly disingenuous for police officers to complain of being treated as though they are guilty before they had a chance to defend themselves while they still treat innocent civilians that way. Besides, Sue Rahr's new policy is clearly fair and not at all unusual in any way. I commend her for implementing this obviously necessary measure to ensure that all complaints of misconduct are dealt with in a fair and balanced manner!

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