Top News Story: Attorney urges officers to file corruption complaints with FBI

Attorney urges officers to file corruption complaints with FBI

Reported by: Patty Santos  Email:  Last Update: 6:34 pm

Watch The Video For Special Report News At 6 PM, 2/21/2012

Tallahassee, Fla. (WTXL) — Leon County Attorney David Chester is urging sworn officers who have corruption concerns to file their complaints with the FBI’s Public Corruption office.

Chester has been working corruption allegation cases against Leon County agencies for several years now.  He questions the validity of the internal investigation that lead to the arrest of LCSO Deputy David Graham.  Graham was charged with stealing thousands of dollars from an elderly man, our call to his attorney has not been returned.

LCSO Legal Counsel Alan Griner investigates an average of 30 to 50 cases involving deputies each year.  He says the majority of them are unfounded.  “If someone calls us with an allegation of a complaint we investigate the complaint,” he said.  “We try to be consistent with our investigations.”  Internal Investigation officers look for facts on a case; the case is then handed to other higher ranking officers within the department for review, before it’s handed to the Sheriff.  If the deputy wishes to have the case and disciplinary action reviewed, it goes to another group of officers within the department.

The Tallahassee Police Department follows a similar protocol with their officer complaints reviews said officer David Northway. “We are transparent in the problems we have; all departments will have issues.” he said.  “If they pop-up here, we expect them to be found out and we follow through with them.”

It’s this process that Chester says he finds questionable.  He urges anyone in the public and even deputies file a public corruption case with the FBI instead.

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