Thursday, October 6, 2016

Police identify "cases of interest" to release online

Posted By on Thu, Oct 6, 2016 at 10:37 AM

click to enlarge Ryan Brown is among those who felt he was treated differently  by police because he's black. - SEAN CAYTON
  • Sean Cayton
  • Ryan Brown is among those who felt he was treated differently by police because he's black.
Want to dive into police reports about a high profile incident? The Colorado Springs Police Department has started a new service that will allow citizens to study redacted police reports.

Called Cases of Interest, the site now includes only four incidents: the Halloween shooting in which Noah Harpham killed three people before being gunned down by police; the case of Ryan Brown, who's black and was pulled from his car by police for no apparent reason in March 2015, the Taco Bell shooting in which a man was killed by a citizen, and the Springs Creek Juvenile Detention Facility riot.

Missing are the Planned Parenthood shooting last November, a case that's pending after a judicial finding that accused shooter Robert Dear isn't competent to stand trial, and Officer Tyler Walker who left the department after an internal affairs investigation of his slamming to the ground of Alexis Acker in Memorial Hospital's emergency room. A video of the incident went viral after the Independent posted it on July 15, 2015. The city paid $100,000 to settle the case earlier this year. The matter wasn't investigated by police until Acker threatened to sue in 2014. Walker was not fired as a result but rather left on his own accord.

It's unclear who decides which incidents constitute a "case of interest," but it's fair to say the police make that decision.

Here's CSPD spokesman Lt. Howard Black's media advisory about the new site:
Welcome the CSPD's cases of interest. Here you will find redacted copies of police cases of a local or national interest that are frequently requested by citizens and the media. The information in these cases cannot be used to harass, intimidate, or seek retribution on any party listed in the case. All cases are redacted in accordance with the Colorado Criminal Justice Records Act. There is not a charge to view or download the reports.

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