Residents accuse KCK officer of being high; Department says could be a medical event

Published: Jan. 23, 2023 at 7:52 PM CST|Updated: Jan. 23, 2023 at 8:08 PM CST
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KANSAS CITY, Kan. (KCTV) - The Kansas City Kansas Police Department is responding to allegations surrounding the behavior of an on-duty officer.

A video of an interaction between officers and people at the home they were called to has been making the rounds on social media.

Police were there regarding a custody dispute.

The video shows two officers talking to the residents, but one appears to be experiencing some kind of impairment. He is leaning against a wall, and blinking rapidly. But he responds to the resident’s questions about his name and badge number.

In the recording, the homeowners accuse the officer of being high. The residents then demand that the other office call a Sergeant—he complies.

In a statement, KCKPD acknowledged the video, and that they’re investigating:

The Kansas City, Kansas Police Department understands concerns currently being raised regarding the appearance and well-being of one of the officers in the video. As soon as we became aware of the situation late last week, we began the process of an internal investigation. The officer is currently on administrative leave pending the outcome. That investigation includes a fit-for-duty evaluation that consists of a comprehensive medical and physical assessment and drug screening. While still early in the investigation, preliminary information indicates that a medical condition may have been a factor in the officer’s appearance.

KCKPD

But some community groups say the police response doesn’t go far enough. MORE 2 released a statement saying no matter the cause, the other officer should have taken it more seriously:

Having met with so many community members who have been violated by this department, we are not surprised. We keep hearing that the problems in Kansas City Kansas Police Department are a ‘thing of the past’ or isolated to one or two officers who are long gone. Reality is, no matter what is happening with the officer in this video, the fact that his fellow officer is seemingly disregarding this highly unusual behavior points to the system we know and have come to believe needs Department of Justice scrutiny. Without outside intervention, we don’t anticipate anything changing in KCKPD.

MORE 2

The video posted on social media runs about four minutes, and it’s unclear what happened next. KCTV5 has requested police body camera video from that night.