Leawood couple fights to open police investigation records - KCTV5

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Leawood couple fights to open police investigation records

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TOPEKA, KS (KCTV) -

A Leawood couple said investigators thought they were growing pot, not hydroponic tomatoes. Now, the pair is taking a stand in the Kansas Statehouse.

Adlynn and Robert Harte testified in support of opening records that personally took them a year to get.

"For a year, we didn't sleep. We worried; we're embarrassed. It really took a big toll on us, not to mention the financial aspect of it," Adlynn Harte said.

The Hartes said they were shocked when Johnson County Sheriff's Deputies stormed into their home, and searched not only their tomato operation in the basement but their entire house. They found nothing.

The Hartes said their trauma was compounded when they had to spend thousands of dollars on a lawyer to find out what evidence put them in that spot.

"We spent a lot of money to get the records. Even when they were given to us, it wasn't done electively, but only because of the publicity. This just has to end and especially because Kansas' laws are so different than every other state in the country," Adlynn Harte said.

That's why the couple was at the statehouse Wednesday, pushing for a bill that would bring Kansas a step closer to Missouri and other states by allowing the public to view affidavits in support of arrest warrants and search warrants.

Opponents include prosecutors and defense lawyers who say information could be used to exploit victims, endanger informants and damage reputations of potentially innocent suspects.

"I think there is a way to compromise this and afford people like the Hartes the ability to quickly go into the courts system and access that same information while at the same time protecting law enforcement and prosecutors the privileged information," said Johnson County District Attorney Steve Howe.

The next step is for the committee to discuss the bill and make revisions based on Wednesday's testimony. That should happen next week.

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