KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Two police officers facing criminal charges in two separate incidents have some questioning what’s happening within the KCK police department.
The police chief say he’s not ashamed or embarrassed by the actions being taken.
Chief Terry Ziegler says his department is not hunkering down over criminal charges filed this year against two of his officers.
He says those charges are the result of his own department’s investigations and the high standards he sets for police officers.
On Tuesday the Wyandotte County District Attorney charged a KCK police officer with sexual battery.
Officer Steven Rios is accused of improperly touching a woman, who also works for the police department.
And in January, prosecutors charged Sergeant Brandon Holloway with felony aggravated battery.
Holloway is accused of using his flashlight or gun to beat a man, as he was taking him into custody.
Other police officers are listed as witnesses against Holloway in court documents.
Ziegler says both cases are the result of a strong culture within the department, where officers do not tolerate anything less than professional behavior.
“The citizens of KCK should be going, ‘Wow! We’ve got a great department. They are not afraid of dealing with their issues. They are not afraid of letting people know about their issues. They submit cases to the DA’s office for prosecution,'” Ziegler said. “That’s huge.”
Ziegler says there are many other cases against police officers that do not result in criminal charges, that Ziegler believes should have.
In those instances, he says he takes administrative action to discipline or fire officers in order to build trust and maintain citizen confidence in police.
Ziegler also wants his community to know that every complaint received is thoroughly investigated to root out wrongdoing. He even refers complaints he receives as tweets to internal affairs. They get the same treatment as a phone call or e-mailed complaint.