Home > Serving America > Cop Talk > Overland Park Kansas officers got in to some deep doo doo

Overland Park Kansas officers got in to some deep doo doo

  1. First guess is that they were trying to cut people a break. Write them for something with no points and a trivial fine instead of slugging them with the major cite that was the actual reason for the stop. Just a guess, but I'm comfortable with that guess, given the rest of the article.
     
  2. Why didn't they just give a verbal warning and ...have a good day.
     
  3. That's what I'd do. But again, just guessing after a long time in the profession: any chief that says "no quotas" and "grant money" in the same interview is, how do you say? "Less than forthcoming."
     
  4. Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaahaha!
     
  5. Yeah, sure, uh-huh ... it's a real head-scratcher.

    Officers tell traffic violators they'll write them for something less expensive ... and dept stats will reflect seat belt enforcement, which just happens to be involved with getting grants monies.

    Things like this seldom happen in a vacuum. Kinda makes you go hmmmm ...

    Also makes you kinda wonder about if there's a Paul Harvey "rest of the story" in the background, meaning the officer who alerted them to the problem, and any supervisors who might've known (or should've known) ... and then how the KS DoT is going to want to handle things (it's their money).

    Even though there's state grant monies available for this, it's not like this would happen anywhere else, right?

    Don't write bad cites. Simple. Keeps you out of trouble, and you can hold your head up when explaining your actions to supervisors and in court.

    Unfortunately, this may result in the remaining cops not being willing to deviate in any manner when stopping suspected traffic violators and issuing cites, like no more "lower" speeds than observed on speeders, ignoring another moving violation or mechanical to give someone a break on the number of violations in a cite, etc.
     
  6. I could generally find some trivial legitimate violation to write someone for if I didn’t want to write the speeding, red light etc. or, just give a warning.

    It never occurred to me to write a citation for an offense that didn’t occur.

    I too think there was just a little pressure from above to write those seat belt tickets for the grant money.

    But, they have no recourse, they flat out lied. That was stupid.
     
  7. I used to stop people for speeding and normally wrote the ticket under the “failure to obey a traffic control device” statute instead of the speeding statute.

    Both tickets were moving violations but the fines were substantially less. I always notated that I utilized radar and wrote the speed that they were traveling.

    I did this for several years until one person decided to contest the ticket.

    The judge slapped the traffic offender with the full cost of the speeding ticket during the proceedings.

    The judge then proceeded to tell the police chief that I either needed to start writing the actual speeding ticket or stop pulling cars over.

    Needless to say, that was the last time I ran radar.


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  8. Hmmmm.

    If I write someone instead of giving them a warning, I always write them for the violation that they were stopped for.

    It doesnt seem that complicated.
     
  9. Pretty common to write 5 over here to give folks a break on a speeding ticket, actual speed listed on ticket to show break was given.

    Judges may drop to blockading (no points) from a speeding ticket to give a break. Pay the fine.

    Judges apparently aren't subject to same ethical rules cops are... they can make up lesser charges from thin air to fill their coffers to give folks a break, cops can't.

    Randy

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  10. Any department, office, or administrator that says they don’t have a quota, isn’t telling you the “rest of the story.” While there may not be quotas per se, any promotions, extra privileges, lateral division transfers, etc.... are all determined by stats. Officers with less traffic stats are deemed lazy, and often overlooked for other officers with greater traffic stats. Doesn’t matter if the “lazy” officer has 3 times the felony cases/convictions vs the traffic stat guy....the traffic cop will always be the perceived better cop by the administration. That’s typically why the young cops are the tail light chasers....trying to get ahead. Not that there’s anything wrong with that,....it’s just funny hearing admin say there’s no quota, then constantly promoting the traffic guys. Oh well.
     
  11. They are toast, and deservedly so.

    If they are willing to do this, what else are they willing to do?

    The dept. Should go after their certification. In my neck of the woods no State Attorney would accept any cases from them or as a witness in any cases.
     
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  13. They may have had orders from above and now they are just getting used as scape goats.
     
  14. This came to light in June. At least in these parts, click it or ticket, seatbelt enforcement, kicks off end of May. Boost stats for more grant money in 2019?

    I write what I see. Our courts are notorious for dropping cites, lowering fines, etc. I write what I see. You usually get more complaints when you try to be nice then when you write it out anyways. 20MPH over gets a 20MPH over ticket.
     
  15. Likewise - Even when I pace at 90 in a 75 and I know there were stretches beforehand where they exceeded even that, I'm writing for 90 because that's the part I can confirm with the speedometer. If I didn't catch your speed but you have an equipment violation, we're going to discuss that matter instead. But making up a charge that didn't happen? No thanks, I'd rather keep this job!
     
  16. I have met Donchez on coupe of occasions, like him.

    I assume the following is the same for other departments -

    Per Overland Park officers - they don’t have a quote per se’ but they do expect you to average a certain amount of tickets each month, not just seat belts. It’s not mandatory, but if you’re under performing, you will be judged for new assignments etc. and lectured by your sergeant since they assume you’re not doing your job.

    I can always give him a call and see if I can get more info out of him.

    First thing out of their mouth on stops is about the damn seatbelt.
     
  17. I have over 2 million miles in a tri axle dump truck , no tickets in 21.5 years off driving ,NONE and proud of that . Was going 57 in a 45 area , I run 55 with a line of cars wanting to go . cop pulls me over , I get ticket he, wrote it for 51 mph that was cheaper and I got 2 points . With my record he could of gave me one with no points . Come on a guy with 2 million big dump truck miles and no violations . I paid the fine and it is what it is . I live in PA and I think when this Nov comes I will lose the 2 point .
     
  18. Not the case in Iowa. Here, all plea deals must have a factual basis. So, you can’t get charged with reckless driving and enter a plea deal to Dog at Large to lower the fines. You may, instead, be able to plea guilty to something like Fail to Obey Traffic Control Device if you ran stop sign. In my county, cases of traffic alone are not subject to plea agreements, as a general rule. If the person goes to court, they go to trial as charged or they plea guilty as charged.

    All of our state traffic charges are adopted as city ordinance by reference, so occasionally, our city attorney will let us decide to let people plea to one ticket to drop a second one. I’ve cited someone for no DL and promised them if they came to court with a valid DL, I would ask the city attorney to dismiss the ticket for the $60 court cost. Nobody has taken me up on it yet.

    Donchez was the Chief in Davenport, IA before Overland Park. I think he was pretty well-liked.
     
  19. Illegal orders are invalid.

    Let's recap, these guys were falsifying a Govt. Document (traffic citation) by writing those seat belt citations to people who were wearing seat belts. They were reported by a fellow officer.

    I have been in the position of being ordered to do something that was not legal to do.

    My response was to say I would check with the State Attorneys on the legality issue. They suddenly decided they didn't want me to do what they had ordered after all.
     
  20. :dunno:
     
  21. He seems well liked in the OPPD as well.
     
  22. Dang it wrong thread
     
  23. You were speeding. You were given a break on the citation. You complain that you didn't get enough of a break. o_O

    There might be a legal or regulatory reason he specifically wrote 6 over having to do with the requirements of speed enforcement by radar. Just sayin.
     
  24. Some places have you take an online course to downgrade a speeding ticket.
     
  25. Yep, that's what it looks like. Stopped people for speeding, cut them a break with a seatbelt ticket and then somebody decided they were going to fight the break they were given.
     
  26. Every time I have been given a break I thank the Officer. If ticket I pay it. (Unless wrong). I got a seat belt ticket I contested. Told Officer I would fight that in court as I am (almost) unable to drive without safety belt on. (I tried once on field road)

    Folks that contest when given a break are very stupid. False info on signed forms is also stupid.
    I worked for government agency. I was TOLD to falsify info on forms because it was the bosses buddy. I refused. I suggested he had authority to " spot check" my work and "correct" it. Just had to sign it out, put his initials by every single crossed out, corrected info. (Both still readable).
    I didn't bother mentioning the only times he did spot check my work (and found errors). I suggested that be used for next level spot check "so I could better understand my mistake."
    EVERY time my original info found to be correct.
    So his buddy was caught, fined....
     
  27. Exactly. Guys do here all the time.
     
  28. OR....., write them every citation you can, INCLUDING the reason for the stop. That way everyone's happy!
     
  29. Conversely, I've seen people who were killing it with traffic not get promoted because the rest of the agency were slugs and if the ones doing the work got promoted, all of the stats would suffer.
     
  30. Kansas has special state traffic enforcement programs that will pay overti ime for departments to write seat belt tickets and enforce dui. It's around major holidays. More DU I you get or seat belts the more money you get. I got 4 or 5 seat belt tickets per hour. I didn't think you could charge court costs on seat belt tickets in ks.
     
  31. I'd rather get an UNSAT evaluation from my employer than earn a place on the County Attorney's "Brady list".
     
  32. This for sure!
     
  33. Yep...was not uncommon for some leo's I worked with to do exactly that...I did not allow those I supervised to do it...just issue a written warning rather than endanger your career