Sunday, September 7, 2003

Ludlow wanted jail-time-for-cash deal



By Dan Klepal
The Cincinnati Enquirer

COVINGTON - Ludlow Police Department officials asked the Kenton County Commonwealth Attorney in June to approve an idea that would have the state offering reduced sentences to suspected drug dealers in exchange for cash donations to the police department, county attorney Bill Crockett said Saturday.

Crockett said he immediately rejected the idea, but confirmed that a Ludlow police officer still tried to pursue the idea even after Crockett's office advised against it.

"When the idea was brought to me, I advised the department that it can't be done, that we can work toward resolving the cases, but not (like that)," Crockett said.

When asked if the idea was illegal or just bad policy, Crockett said: "Both. It's illegal and it would look bad. There is just no basis in the Kentucky revised statute to achieve what they wanted to do."

The idea could still land both the prosecutor and the police department in hot water.

The Kentucky State Police Special Investigations Unit will announce Monday whether it will investigate a complaint filed against a Northern Kentucky agency. State police spokeswoman Lt. Lisa Rudzinski would not confirm the nature of the complaint, which agency the complaint was filed against, or who filed the complaint. The unit investigates cases where a local police agency has a conflict of interest in an investigation.

When asked if the state police is considering an investigation against his department, Ludlow Police Chief Ray Murphy said only: "I've heard the rumors."

E-mail dklepal@enquirer.com




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