Failures may have allowed convicted felon who killed Independence officer to walk free

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Should the gunman that killed a 22-year-old Independence officer have been free in the first place?

FOX4 is investigating potential failures in the system that may have allowed the convicted felon, facing new charges, to be out instead of behind bars.

Cody Harrison, 33, of Gladstone, was a violent felon who was on parole. The Jackson County Department of Corrections took him back to prison in November for a minor violation but let him go six months later.

What the corrections department didn’t know is that he had another bigger violation that could have kept him locked up much longer.

Steve Hauser owns the home on S. Northern Boulevard, He said his tenant is a woman who was recently picked up on drug charges in Kansas and is in jail.

“Obviously she was into drugs and let these guys hang around here,” he said.

Those guys were Harrison and another man, who Hauser said were squatting here while his tenant was away.

“As far as I know he wasn’t living here,” Hauser said. “Don’t know if he’d ever been here before, I’ve never seen him.”

Many people believe instead of staying at that home, Harrison should have been behind bars.

A violent felon who spent 8 of a 15-year sentence in prison for shooting at someone in Clay County in 2011.

Harrison violated parole in November when he was arrested for a burglary in Grain Valley.

The corrections department said it didn’t send Harrison back to prison for that violation because it didn’t know about the burglary arrest.

Harrison was charged in July and didn’t show up for a recent court date. Both Jackson County Court and the DOC issued warrants this week.

These aren’t the only concerns FOX4 is looking into. We have learned that Harrison was arrested but not charged on as many as two occasions.

FOX4 will keep working for you and digging for answers as to why.

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