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Kansas City, KS (KSHB) — A social justice advocacy organization in Kansas City, Kansas, has launched its own hotline for victims to report alleged police misconduct and abuse.
The hotline — victims can call 913-228-3007 — will be monitored by the Metro Organization for Racial and Economic Equity , known in the community as More2. It will not be monitored 24/7, but callers can expect privacy.
The group said voicemails will not be turned over to law enforcement.
“These victims feel powerless, you know what I mean?,” Khadijah Hardaway said. “So, we need to find a way to have someone mediate between the powerless and the powerful.”
A month ago, More2 marched to KCK City Hall. The group called for Mayor David Alvey to fire KCK Chief of Police Terry Zeigler, the city to set up an independent bilingual hotline to report abuse and asked for outside investigations of officers within KCKPD.
The department is currently facing two federal lawsuits alleging sexual abuse and misconduct by police officers.
One lawsuit was filed by Lamonte McIntyre , who was wrongly convicted and later exonerated for a murder he did not commit. The lawsuit alleges now-retired detective Roger Golubski sexually assaulted and abused women, resulting in fabricated statements.
Another lawsuit has been filed by a former police cadet who claims she was dismissed from the cadet program after she reported her sexual harassment and sexual assault by a supervising officer.
KCKPD released a statement addressing More2’s demands and concerns. The department said, in part, that it takes all complaints of misconduct or abuse seriously, but that the group’s allegations have never been formally reported.
KCKPD also said it already has an anonymous complaint hotline, which can be reached at 913-573-6373.
Here is the complete statement from the KCK police:
The victimization of citizens alleged by More2, at the hands of law enforcement has never been brought to the attention of the department through any means other than social media and protests. The Department has well established Internal Affairs processes consistent with the 21st Century Report on Policing. Additionally, we have established consistent and reputable training for our Internal Affairs staff administered by The Center for American and International Law Institute for Law Enforcement Administration.
The Police Department already has an anonymous complaint hotline 913-573-6373, in which all complaints regardless of language will be translated, and the Unified Government of Wyandotte County, Kansas City, Kansas has an anonymous ethics hotline 913-621-3294.
Police handled 136,303 calls for service in 2018 with 140 complaints filed with Internal Affairs. That’s only 0.1% of calls which resulted in a complaint being filed against Police. Looking at it another way, only one complaint was filed for every 974 calls.
The current administration is not able to answer for the historical events alleged by More2. It should be noted that Chief Zeigler did work on a team with Roger Golubski in Homicide from 1999-2002, however Chief Zeigler never supervised nor was notified of any unlawful acts or allegations of unlawful acts by Detective Golubski. Roger Golubski retired from the Department in 2010. The current administration can answer for our current policies, procedures and hiring practices. The police department takes all allegations seriously and we hold ourselves to the highest moral and ethical standards. The Chief initiates Internal Affairs investigations routinely when information comes to his attention and submits those cases to the District Attorney. Since January 2015, the Internal Affairs Unit has submitted 46 case files to the District Attorney’s office for prosecuton.
Following a significant increase in U-Visa Applications to the Kansas City, Kansas Police Department in 2014 and 2015, the KCKPD Victim Services Unit, proposed written procedures in 2017 to provide consistent processing and review of the growing number of applications. The “U Visa Law Enforcement Certification Resource Guide” prepared by the Department of Homeland Security was consulted in developing the Police Department’s procedure. The Guide makes clear that the U-Visa program is a law enforcement tool meant to aid in criminal investigations in an effort to keep our communities safe. A bilingual victim-witness coordinator in the Police Department assists applicants of the U-Visa program in an effort to encourage accessibility of the program. Federal law does not allow every application to be approved, but the Department’s approval rate is consistent or higher than Department’s in comparable cities.
The Department has initiated several new and successful crime-fighting strategies since Terry Zeigler was appointed Chief. Overall crime in Kansas City, Kansas dropped nearly 11% in 2018 over the previous year. Incidents of total crimes decreased from 8,810 in 2017 to 7,850 in 2018. Homicides declined by 14.6%, while drive-by shootings showed the sharpest drop at 17.6% from the year before.
The Kansas City, Kansas Police Department is committed to Service, Honor, Integrity, and Professionalism.
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