Monday, July 30, 2007

What to investigate -- shooting cats, or false testimony?

It was fascinating that in the Gazette piece about Police Chief St. John and his news conference, there was more discussion about Sgt. Mark Kirkpatrick's habit of shooting cats while driving to and from work than there was about perjury.

Shooting cats may be a sort of a sociopathic thing to do, but since when have police departments been completely free of officers with sociopathy?

The most important item was addressed with the utmost brevity:

It also was alleged at trial that two officers gave false testimony. Officer Terry Bechtold told jurors at Feuerstein's trial that the false testimony was made by Kirkpatrick, a command officer in the agency's detective division, and Detective Blake Richardson.

Given that the jurors' decision rested in no small part on the fact that they didn't find the witnesses for the defense to be credible (if they had believed them to be telling the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, then the decision would have gone very differently) -- well, given that, then step one needs to be to investigate the lies and half-truths told at the trial.

That needs to start from the top and work its way down.

There was no bombshell at the news conference, such as any high-profile resignations.

Maybe there will be one at the next City Council meeting. Hope springs eternal.

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