LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer has asked the FBI to investigate the alleged sexual abuse of children in a police youth outreach program.
Fischer also hired former U.S. Attorney Kerry Harvey to review the investigation conducted by Louisville Metro Police and determine whether “errors were made.”
“If there has been an injustice, it will be remedied,” Fischer said.
A lawsuit filed on behalf of a participant in the Youth Explorer program charges that his alleged rape by Officers Kenneth Betts and Brandon Wood was “concealed” by department officials. Betts and Wood are accused of sexually assaulting the participant from 2011 through 2013 and recording the incidents to make pornography.
The Courier-Journal reported (https://cjky.it/2mVua8Q) that Police Chief Steve Conrad ended an investigation of alleged improper contact between Betts and a teenage girl in the program because Betts resigned in 2014. Wood is on administrative assignment.
Conrad said he is prohibited from talking about the case because the court documents are sealed. Fischer said he expects the case will be unsealed next week. The newspaper has filed a motion to unseal the case. The city has also asked that it be unsealed.
Councilman David James said Friday that Harvey’s investigation should include the mayor’s office because former police commanders who were in the department at the time of the allegations are now in the Fischer administration.
“It’s important we not just limit it to the police department, but knowing who knew what when, and wherever that goes is important,” James said.
James and council member James Peden said they met with Conrad about the Explorer program before the suit was filed. Both said they’ve received information from police officers that there could be more allegations.
“If anything, (Mayor Fischer) finally realizes this has now extended beyond the boundaries of just a bad police officer,” Peden said.
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