Police keep arrest details secret

Put-in-Bay officers skip the particulars about who gets handcuffed
Register
Aug 18, 2014

 

In the midst of controversies surrounding complaints of false arrests and false information in police reports, the Put-in-Bay police have changed the way they track crime on the island. 

They're leaving out the details. 

About a dozen recent arrest reports filed by police simply state the charges filed against criminal suspects without detailing any information about the circumstances that led to their arrests. Some arrest reports list charges filed but fail to identify the person arrested. 

The Ohio Revised Code requires police to provide all pertinent information — with few exceptions — in arrest reports, which are public record.

The statutes are designed to prevent law enforcement agencies from making arrests without gathering evidence of a crime, or secretly arresting people without identifying them.

About a dozen recent crime incident reports filed by the PIB police don't provide information about evidence, the circumstances or causes for the arrests, or in some instances the names of the people arrested. 

On Friday, the department's public information officer told the Register the department's lawyer has recently instructed officers to alter their methods of presenting police reports to the public.

It's undetermined what information they've been told to omit, because the omitted information is not consistent.

On July 27, for example, police arrested a man at a Catawba Avenue bar and cited him with disorderly conduct intoxicated. The police report detailing the incident, which occurred at about 2:20 a.m., does not include the man's name or the acts justifying his arrest.

A similar Aug. 4 police report lists an arrested man's name, but does not include any details about his alleged crime. Police cited him with disorderly conduct intoxicated in the 1400 block of Catawba Ave at about 11:30 p.m.

An Aug. 5 report of a crime also occurring on Catawba Avenue simply states police arrested a man at a bar at about 2:10 a.m. It does not include the offender's name or criminal charges.

Many Put-in-Bay police reports containing incomplete information pertained to serious crimes, including assaults and domestic violence. Some victims required transportation off South Bass Island in medical helicopters for treatment at mainland hospitals.

Chief Lampela, village law director George Wilber and Ottawa County Prosecutor Mark Mulligan did not respond to inquiries about how and when the Put-in-Bay police department was instructed to adopt the improper crime reporting methods. 

Wilber generally does not comment on public matters or respond to inquiries from the public and the media. It appears he is improperly ignoring the Register's public records request for specific public records about the instructions the police department was given prior to the implementation of the improper changes in the way police officers report crime. 

The changes come as Wilber, Lampela and PIB Mayor Margaret Scarpelli have ignored complaints from the Put-in-Bay Resort of a years-long harassment campaign from the police department, including the alleged false arrests of three employees nearly a year ago. The arrests were captured on video and appear to show the officer committing numerous civil rights violation. 

Note: This story modifies a previous version, which incorrectly referenced the Put-in-Bay police public information officer.

Comments

Catawba

Oh, it's such a stirring sight; These gypsies in the palace.

Don Lee

That pocket-sized PD has room in the T.O. for a "public relations officer"? More info on that, plz. (Leaving aside the entire question of how good they are at public relations.)

Babo

I was thinking the same thing.

yea right

SHUT THEM DOWN. what's it going to take for the state to wake up

RNR

After reading about everything going on and the police/mayors responses (or lack thereof) I will not be going to PIB again until they fix this mess!!

ladydye_5

So if you get arrested, but your NAME is not on a report, how in the H$!! do they make you pay it or take you to court??? Or if your name is on it with no charge??? Um, not really legal is it?!?! I would have a lawyer all over that.

Former newspape...

Sandusky Register....it appears what the PNB Police are doing is in direct violation of the state's Sunshine Laws. Get your lawyer and sue them....it will set an example to other law enforcement departments that they have to live by the law like the citizens they "protect and serve."

Babo

Thank you for this suggestion. The SR does a great job of reporting Public Records and meetings violations but in the past has been unwilling to step up to the plate and file the Mandamus Complaint against the offending government. The paper has one of the best First Amendment, public records lawyers around on retainer in all likelihood, so there really is no excuse not to file.

DickTracey

Only one person that teaches those boys how to fill out a report. THE CHIEF

Only one person is responsible to see that the reports are being filled out properly. THE CHIEF

Only one person to blame when all of these mistakes are being made. THE CHIEF

Obviously someone is not doing their job. THE CHIEF

Somebody needs to be fired. THE CHIEF

WeThePeople1965

SR, please put in a Sunshine Law request for information they refuse to disclose. Even then, you might not get honest answers.

yea right

SR is run by a bunch or kids.

FedupIslander

This really should nnot come as a suprise to anyone, The PIB PD has a Lonnnnggg history under Lampela of false police reports and corupt activity. Now that people are looking into it, they simply try to obfuscate things by just not writing the report correctly. Demoting one officer to his $8.00 per hour but still allowing him to hold a position of authority was not the answer and just make him more likely to accept payoffs and condone or look to other way. Let's hope real soon the higher powers on a state and federal level dig and dig deep. Only then will the island be rid of these thugs.

Babo

You and other Islanders need to request the public records and when you receive redacted or incomplete records put your money up and sue the Village for violations of the Public Records Act.

knowitall

Sounds like a case for the ohio Attorney General to get involved with!

Peterson4030

This is a small minded story for a small minded audience. Does the SR really think that people don’t realize what they are doing here? I have been reading this newspaper for the past 10 years and it does not take a genius to realize that the SR is anti- law enforcement. They did it to Perkins PD, they did it to Sandusky PD, they are doing it to Sandusky County, and now they are doing it to PIB PD. I mean unless the Chief or the Sheriff keep Matt Westerhold in their left front pocket, he and his newspaper launch a crusade to ruin the agency and or specific officers or deputies.
I don’t live on the island, I don’t work on the island and I don’t have any friends or relatives that live or work on the island, but it is does not take a rocket scientist to figure out that the police have altered their reporting methods because of the SR’s negative press. Doing this does not automatically mean that they are not documenting this vital informantion.
PIBPD is doing the same thing other law enforcement agencies in Ohio have done for years, mainly as a result of a decision out of a case out of Wayne County, BEACON JOURNAL PUBLISHING COMPANY, v. MAURER, Sheriff. Ohio Revised Code 149.43(A)(1)(h) says that a confidential law enforcement investigatory record is not a public record. O.R.C. 149.43(A)(2)(a) and (c) goes on to say that: ‘Confidential law enforcement investigatory record’ means any record that pertains to a law enforcement matter of a criminal, quasi-criminal, civil, or administrative nature, but only to the extent that the release of the record would create a high probability of disclosure of any of the following:“(a) The identity of a suspect who has not been charged with the offense to which the record pertains (c) Specific confidential investigatory techniques or procedures or specific investigatory work product.”
I would be willing to bet that the legal counsel has instructed PIBPD to do a Public Narrative, which is all they release to the SR, and an Investigatory Narrative, which details “investigatory techniques or procedures or specific investigatory work product”. These reports are then held until the case is resolved, as it may violate certain discovery procedures set forth in the criminal procedures section of the O.R.C. Once the case has gone through the judicial process the SR can then get a copy of all of the narratives; but by that time the story is 6 months.
We all know that 6 month old stories that release the names of Disorderly Conduct Arrestees don’t sell newspapers, but misleading stories attacking the local police do! After all, have you ever seen the SR print a story saying they were wrong about a negative story they wrote about the Police or Sheriff’s Departments??
I am not defending the PIBPD nor the Mayor. It is obvious that they have some issues that they need to fix, but when the village and twp are only willing to pay $8 an hour for a few months worth of work, then you are not going to get career cops. Instead you are going to get cadet’s right out of the academy that need their commission held. Spend some money training and hiring Law Enforcement Professionals and you minimize the liability that stupid unprofessional things will happen.
As far as the police reports withholding information that the SR thinks they are entitle to… You made your bed SR, now you have to sleep in it. If you don’t like it file a law suit.

Presto

lol @ Peterson! .....Psssst...Chief is that you?.......

SUPERB JOB ONCE AGAIN SANDUSKY REGISTER!!!!
KEEP SHINING THAT LIGHT BRIGHTLY!!!!
It's amazing what scum crawls out in the daylight when you start rummaging around!
Sunshine Laws Here We Come!
GOOD JOB KEEP IT UP!
KEEP POKING AROUND THERE'S GOT TO BE MORE! :-)

WeThePeople1965

You're new here! Funny how they show up randomly.

Anyway, I think that you're misunderstanding the principle- the SR isn't anti-law enforcement, they're simply shaming the corrupt parts of it. You can't deny that skipping important meetings (in which a state rep is present) is fishy. Lampela is a snake.

'As far as the police reports withholding information that the SR thinks they are entitle to...'
That's called transparency, and the public has the right to know what is going on in their PD. Hiding facts takes away trust and respect of authorities by people. This is the very reason Ferguson, MO is going through what they're going through. Texas Governor Rick Perry has nothing on law enforcement- I respect them, but one thing Obummer got right today in his speech is that the situation in Ferguson is a shadow of a dreaded phenomenon- police are starting to abuse power and the line between law enforcement and full-powered militia is beginning to get blurry and that is completely unacceptable. I understand that a minority of citizens and/or visitors in Ferguson are violently protesting but there are better ways than to carry out a full civil war complete with tear gas. I also understand that PIBPD and Ferguson, MO are two totally different pictures but when comparing the two, there are some similarities in how they handle things.

Digger-Nick

Lmao @ Peterson...watch....pay attention.....federal intervention coming....read again...I smell Bacon

Ralph J.

"On Friday, the department's public relations officer told the Register the department's lawyer has recently instructed officers to alter their methods of presenting police reports to the public."
Public relations officer? Name?
http://www.put-in-baypolice.org/...
Don Dress, Put-in-Bay police public relations officer?
http://www.sanduskyregister.com/...

Digger-Nick

And by the way peterson, before you profess to understand how to CUT COPY AND PASTE from Google, you might learn to understand that you might want to READ what you post....YOU SAY “(a) The identity of a suspect who has not been charged with the offense to which the record pertains (c) Specific confidential investigatory techniques or procedures or specific investigatory work product.”

These people HAD BEEN ARRESTED AND CHARGED...no investigation pending...No further investigation indicated.. Crooked Cops, overpaid (even at $8.00) Reform starts at the top.

Digger-Nick

Here's a real FUNNY if you have FACEBOOK check out the profile for Amanda Goaziou from Put-in-Bay....She calls out the register for "biased" reporting. Guess what her sister does? Collects the scam parking tickets the PIB PB Issues, which the procedures failed a state audit. She must be selling more than candy at the "Candy Bar" at Put-in-Bay, people who post defenses of the PIB PD probably deserve week old fudge and stale candy.

knowitall

Lol

DickTracey

Hey Digger, are you sure you spelled the name right? I went to that page and all I see is a profile pic of Chris Farley!

Ralph J.

"The Put-in-Bay Police force is known for its incredibly wonderful customer service, which may sound odd for a police force, but PIB Police Chief Rick Lampley, a psychologist, believes it is better to treat customers (ie offenders) with a firm hand but an understanding heart. We don’t want to ask you to come visit our jails, but if you or someone you know does, here is the information on where to call or visit."
Psychologist? Is this satire?
http://www.putinbayonline.com/se...

Ralph J.
Digger-Nick

Psycho maybe lol