Police Accountability Report: Episode 80 – LRN.fm
This week, a couple stories that should cause anyone critically thinking to see that those wearing badges aren’t always operating with the best intentions.
AZ board investigates ex-cop who reportedly used stun gun on stepson
A Mesa officer lost his job because he used a stun gun on his stepson for bringing home an unsatisfactory report card. He worked for Mesa police for about six years. But some might argue he never should have been hired in the first place.
This story begins in 2002, when Larry Kelso applied to be a Phoenix police officer. According to a report from the Arizona Peace Officer Standards and Training Board, he admitted on the application to using marijuana 20 times, trying LSD once and using mushrooms three times. He didn’t get the job. Then in 2005, when Kelso applied to the Mesa Police Department, he left out some of those details.
“He failed to disclose he had applied for other agencies and also he had changed his answers to be more accommodating,” said Detective Steve Berry with the Mesa Police Department. Berry said Mesa police weren’t aware of this until Kelso’s wife at the time called police and told them in August 2011. A few days after that call, Mesa police got another call, this time from Kelso’s stepson.
“He had allegedly used a Taser, a department-issued Taser, on his then-14-year-old son,” Berry said. Kelso’s stepson told police he had brought home a report card Kelso wasn’t happy with. Police said Kelso then concocted a story to explain why he deployed his stun gun.
“An aggressive dog had come into the yard,” Berry said.
The stepson said the incident happened in 2007; again, police weren’t aware until he called them in August 2011. But Mesa police said they immediately began investigating after that.
“We take these things very seriously,” Berry said.
According to court records, Kelso claimed he used the stun gun in self-defense because his stepson attacked him with an iron. But a jury convicted him of aggravated assault and Mesa police said if Kelso hadn’t resigned first, he likely would’ve been fired.
“Clearly this is someone the police department would not have on our force,” Berry said.
Kelso’s case is now up before the Arizona Peace Officer Standards and Training Board; they’ll decide whether to suspend his certification, revoke it or take no action.
If Kelso is willing to taser his step-son, what do you think he’d be willing to do to a stranger whom he has acquired no feelings for whatsoever?
Police Officer Accused of Stealing $200
A Milwaukee police officer is accused of stealing about $200 from a store where he was investigating a separate burglary complaint.
Carl V. Howell was charged Tuesday with felony misconduct in office and misdemeanor theft.
A criminal complaint says the 37-year-old Howell responded to a burglary report at a Milwaukee convenience store in late November. The store owner showed Howell a drawer of cash that the burglar had bypassed.
The complaint says Howell returned to the drawer alone a few minutes later, put some cash in his pocket and walked out. Prosecutors say the theft was captured on store surveillance video.
The complaint quotes Howell as acknowledging he took about $200 because he was behind on his rent.
I hope you’ll take a moment to consider just what it is that you are paying for via taxation – and speak out against the violence.
Until next week, stay safe and remember that badges don’t grant extra rights.