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LPD Under Investigation After City Council Meeting

LAWTON Okla_ The Lawton City Council caused quite stir at the start of Tuesday night's meeting by announcing they are hiring an outside firm to investigate the Lawton Police Department.

The Fidelis group is based out of Oklahoma City. Councilman Keith Jackson said the firm is made up of retired FBI agents and will investigate the department from top to bottom. Jackson said it actually all started about three months ago, when several police officers came to him and other council members with their complaints. 

They accused LPD of nepotism and problems with the hiring process. Jackson said the recent public outcry over a lack of communication after a pair of attempted kidnappings convinced the council to order an in-depth investigation.

"We're calling for this investigation to address any and everything in the police department," Jackson said.

Jackson said around 25 police officers or spouses who came to council members with complaints that they said were not being addressed within the department.

"They didn't feel like they were getting help necessarily from the administration, and they needed help from the council," Jackson said.

Jackson hopes since all these officers came to them before, they'll continue to talk when the investigation happens.

"That is the only way we know to address their specific problems," Jackson said. "If they don't come forward, there is not much we can do."

Councilman Jackson doesn't believe the investigation will bring up anything criminal, but he does believe it is a serious matter.

"We are not taking it lightly, or we wouldn't be spending taxpayers' money to do this," Jackson said. "So, we will take the necessary action to solve a lot of problems."

Jackson said one of the main selling points for the group is they have no connections to the Lawton Police Department. They will investigate everything from the actual police officers to policies and even financial bookkeeping procedures.

Jackson said he hopes the investigation will begin by the end of the month, but he's not sure how long it will last. They're still working out the details of the contract. The company charges $125 per hour.

 

 

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