Seven investigators in a Missouri Crimes Against Children police unit are suspended pending an investigation into whether they failed to investigate cases where children were sexually assaulted in a timely manner.
An investigation is underway by the internal affairs unit of the Kansas City Missouri Police Department, and they are looking at a group of detectives and sergeants in the Crimes Against Children section.
A statement from KCPD said that an internal investigation was started after Chief Darryl Forte became aware that the Crimes Against Children unit had not addressed cases “in a timely manner according to department standards and public expectations,” as reported by KCTV5 News in Kansas City, MO.
This unit of the department investigates cases alleging sexual or physical abuse and/or neglect of children. The division also investigates kidnappings and custodial violations.
The local media outlet reported that an investigation is underway to look into whether children were left with an alleged abuser in homes or other situations and the unit failed to investigate.
Chief Forte was also reported to have been concerned about how the cases were being assigned and investigated.
In particular, internal affairs is looking into whether seven detectives and two sergeants failed to handle cases in an effective and timely manner. These individuals are on paid leave during the investigation.
A mother of a fifteen-year-old victim said that her daughter was raped by an older man. She found her daughter in the motel. “She don’t have the same smile she has before,” the woman was reported to have said. She wanted to keep her identify annonymous in order to protect her daughter. The man allegedly forced the girl to have sex with him by threatening her family.
“She says there’s not enough evidence to get him,” the mother was reported to say about one of the detectives.
The mother also said the detective looked at her daughter suspiciously after seeing a surveillance tape of the girl and the man in the motel lobby. The detective allegedly said, “You don’t look like you were scared.” She also told the mother that she needed to talk to her daughter and tell her “she’s not supposed to be friends wth old people.” The mother said her daughter cried. Sex between a 15-year-old and an adult is a crime in Kansas.
The statement from KCPD said, “As soon as commanders became aware of the case management issues, corrective actions began, and the Department launched an internal investigation to detemine what led to the problems. That investigation is ongoing.”
The Missouri police department added, “The department is concerned that such serious cases with such vulnerable victims may not have been handled in the most effective manner possible.”
A commander and a sergeant, and other detectives with experience in Crimes Against Children cases have been assigned to handle the cases during the investigation.
Lana Shadwick is a writer and legal analyst for Breitbart Texas. She has served as a prosecutor and associate judge. Follow her @LanaShadwick2