Thursday, April 30, 2009

False alarm fees to increase May 1


False alarms soon will become a little more costly for Kansas City residents.

The Kansas City Missouri Police Department will increase annual renewal fees from $35 to $40 per false security system alarm beginning May 1, 2009. The increase will apply to both residential and business alarm users. Residential users are allowed two free false alarms and will now be charged $40 for each subsequent false alarm up to $120. Businesses pay $40 for each false alarm. Residents and businesses are not required to pay the annual renewal fee if they have had no false alarm. New permit fees have not changed. Police will not respond to alarms not registered with KCPD.

The purpose of the city’s false alarm ordinance is to minimize the number of false alarm dispatches, thereby keeping more officers available for emergency calls. About 97 percent of Kansas City’s security alarms are false alarms. The ordinance defines a false alarm as “an alarm signal eliciting a police response when a situation requiring immediate response does not in fact exist.”

The Board of Police Commissioners revised the alarm renewal fee based on how many false alarms police respond to and the manpower and other costs involved with doing so.

The law is working. Since 2007, the number of registered alarms in Kansas City has increased 5 percent, but the number of false alarms has fallen 1.2 percent. Kansas City averages 0.29 false alarm calls per registered user, which is about half of the industry standard of 0.50 calls per registered alarm user.

To minimize the number of false alarm dispatches, KCPD’s Private Alarm Section urges all alarm users to ensure the reliability of their system by properly training everyone who uses it and scheduling routine maintenance. Below is the new fee schedule set by the Board of Police Commissioners:

New residential alarm permit: $45
New business alarm permit: $45
New master permit (apartments): $45
Annual renewal fee – residential: $0 (two or fewer false alarms)
Annual renewal fee – residential: $40 per false alarm exceeding two ($120 maximum)
Annual renewal fee – business: $0 (no false alarms)
Annual renewal fee – business: $40 per false alarm (no maximum)

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

E-mail hoax

We've received some inquiries about the below e-mail going around, and we want to assure everyone that it is a hoax. We have no record of this happening to anyone anywhere around here. The e-mail subject line is typically something like "safety alert per Kansas City Police Department" or "new way to be carjacked." The KCPD did not issue any such warning to anyone in a newsletter or any other form of communication. We always encourage everyone to be safe by being aware of what's around them at all times, but this particular method of criminal behavior has not been reported, so the public should not be alarmed. Here's what one version of the e-mail says:

"Warning..!!!! Warning..!!!! Warning..!!!!
Just last weekend on Friday night we parked in a public parking area. As we drove away I noticed a sticker on the rear window of the car. When I took it off after I got home, it was a receipt for gas. Luckily my friend told me not to stop as it could be someone waiting for me to get out of the car Then we received this email yesterday (per KCPD newsletter)

Heads up everyone! Please, keep this circulating.... You walk across the parking lot, unlock your car and get inside. You start the engine and shift into Reverse. When you look into the rearview mirror to back out of your parking space, you notice a piece of paper stuck to the middle of the rear window. So, you shift into Park, unlock your doors, and jump out of your car to remove that paper (or whatever it is) that is obstructing your view. When you reach the back of your car, that is when the carjackers appear out of nowhere, jump into your car and take off. They practically mow you down as they speed off in your car. And guess what, ladies? I bet your purse is still in the car. So now the carjacker has your car, your home address, your money, and your keys. Your home and your whole identity are now compromised!


If you see a piece of paper stuck to your back window, just drive away. Remove the paper later. And be thankful that you read this e-mail. I hope you will forward this to friends and family, especially to women. A purse contains all kinds of personal information and identification documents, and you certainly do NOT want this to fall into the wrong hands.

Again, this is not true, so if the e-mail has come your way, disregard it.

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Budget consequences

Today, the Board of Police Commissioners adopted a $175 million general fund budget for FY 09-10. This budget is $15 million short of what we would have needed to continue operating the department at 08-09 levels. This meant we had to make some hard choices, and try as we might, there will be an inevitable impact on public safety.

There has been much talk that this budget will not take officers off the street. Put simply, that’s impossible. No officers will be laid off, but attrition will reduce numbers. This budget has forced us to implement a hiring freeze. We have 21 fewer police officers than we did on this date last year. Another five to 10 will retire next month under our early retirement incentive program, and we typically lose one officer a week in normal turn-over. We have 31 recruits in the Academy right now who will be retained only if we are awarded a federal grant. Otherwise, they will be laid off, and our training investment in them will be lost. Even if we do keep them, they’ll likely make up just a third of the losses through attrition we expect this year.

A loss of officers will be felt immediately on June 1 when we must take 18 of them off the street to staff detention units at the patrol division stations. To cut overtime pay in the Headquarters Detention Unit, we have to pull all of the (civilian) detention officers downtown to Headquarters. We simply don’t have enough money to pay the overtime. As I had said would happen, cutting – in this case just freezing – civilian jobs will pull officers off the streets to do them.

Our median response time in March 2009 was 5.97 minutes. That’s from the time you call 911 to the time a police officer arrives at your door. That’s one of our lowest response times in history, and it’s been achieved by a larger workforce. When voters approved the public safety sales tax in 2002, they were promised 20 additional police officers a year. In the last 12 years, KCPD’s manpower has gone up 20 percent, and crime has fallen 30 percent. This is no coincidence. I fear that the budget cuts we got from the city will force us to undo our last three years of progress. Public safety comes with a dollar figure, and ours has been slashed.

About this time every year, there also are cries for consolidation with the city. This department is very open to that and has attempted it several times. We have repeatedly requested business plans from the City Manager’s Office on what such a consolidation would look like but have never received a plan. (Our department, however, has provided several such plans to the city. The latest was our plan to take over the policing of KCI Airport. The city declined to act on that report.) We are now in the process of combining IT functions with the city, but the city has yet to identify any savings that will result.

I can assure you that the men and women of this department will do everything they can, even with reduced resources, to continue to serve the public. We are motivated, and our officers have and will continue to put their lives on the line daily for the safety of our city.

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Dispatches from Mexico: Swine flu & earthquakes

With the Swine Flu outbreak growing seemingly larger every day, we’ve been worried about the six officers we have learning Spanish down in Morelia, Mexico (a map of where that’s located is posted above). Here’s the latest update from Sergeant Tami Pronske:

Hola, everyone. Just want to send an update on a few things. A lot of our families and friends are worried about us with the Swine Flu going around. We are OK, and it’s not affecting us. There have been no reports of it in Morelia, so far. More and more people here are wearing the surgical masks, but even that isn't going to do much for them. My host family says that people are over-reacting, and I agree. We are being careful and washing our hands all the time and making sure not to kiss. In Mexico, it is proper to kiss someone on the cheek when you meet them.

Also, while in class today, (professor) Lucia came in and told us we had to go outside. Of course, we don't ever question Lucia, and when we got outside, she said there had been an earthquake. We are on the third floor of a building, and the floors below us are always vibrating or rumbling from gym equipment downstairs, so we thought nothing of it. Apparently, the center of the quake was near the coast, and we are nowhere near that. We got a good laugh and went back in to finish our class. First Swine Flu, then earthquakes. But nothing keeps us down, and it’s business as usual!

We have been busy in class and studying in our time after class. The best place for us is the local Starbucks since we can get internet there. We sit outside and enjoy some postres and cafe and work on tarea (homework).

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Monday, April 27, 2009

Dispatches from Mexico - 1st installment

Nineteen department members graduated from the third annual session of our Spanish Immersion program on April 10. The program condenses four semesters of collegiate Spanish coursework into 10 weeks and is taught by a professor from Mexico. Participants not only learn the language, they learn the culture. At the end of the course, the top six students were selected to continue their studies through immersion in Kansas City’s sister city of Morelia, Mexico.

(Above are pictures of Sergeant Tamara Pronske in Mexico City and downtown Morelia from a hotel rooftop at night. Click on them to see larger versions.)

The point of the program is to make as many KCPD members conversant in Spanish as possible. Kansas City has the largest Hispanic population of any city in the state, with more than 50,000 people in Jackson County alone claiming Latino heritage, according to the U.S. Census Bureau in 2007. Those numbers are on the rise, and many of these people speak only Spanish. Our officers must be able to police these communities effectively for the safety of the entire city, so teaching them Spanish is a necessity, not a luxury.

The six officers left for Mexico a little over a week ago. When they got to Morelia, they moved in with host families and are continuing their Spanish studies at the local university. Sergeant Tamara Pronske is keeping us up to date with what the officers are doing down there, and I’ll be posting some of her updates on here weekly. In addition, we’re all praying they avoid the latest swine flu outbreak, though it sounds like some are already battling illness.

April 19:
Today we flew into Mexico City. The city is huge - 23 million people. The traffic is crazy scary and I would NEVER drive in it. We met Lucia (our professor) and drove to the hotel. We had our first meal in Mexico, and it was yummy! Lucia then walked us to the downtown area where the federal buildings are. At 6 p.m., a ton of Military Police and the Military band come out of the building where the president works, and they take down this huge flag. It is so big, it cannot be folded - they roll it. All the while, the band is playing and everyone is just in awe. They then take it into the building where the president works. This happens everyday at 6 p.m. So much national pride here. We walked through some cathedrals and watched mass. Once again the architecture was amazing.

April 23:
We are in Morelia and it is everything Lucia said it was - beautiful and the weather is perfecto. I got sick the first night here but got medicine and am starting to feel better. Another officer has a respiratory infection, and the other guys are starting to get worried :).

April 26:
Well, it has been a few days since my last update and I have been very busy. On Day 5, I started to really feel better. After class, Randy took me all around downtown (centro) to get a better grasp of the city since I missed the group tour the day before due to the fact I was sick. The centro is very nice, with a lot of great cathedrals and churches. The architecture is amazing. It was a very low-key day.

On Day 6, we had class, and then the whole group went back to the centro to walk around and eat dinner at a very Mexican restaurant called Burger King. Yes, after a while, even I get tired of Mexican food. It was kinda’ nice to have some food that’s familiar.

Day 7 was great. We started out at KIIS (our school is called the Kentucky Institute for International Studies) and our bus driver, Pepe, drove us to Santa Clara Del Cobre, about an hour outside of Morelia. Pepe is our driver everywhere we go. He’s great and can maneuver a bus through anything.

Santa Clara is a village (and I mean very small village) that is known for its copper (cobre) smiths, and their work is world famous. While there, we watched cobre smiths take big chunks of copper out of a fire and 3-4 men would hit it with large hammers until the copper chunk got cold. By hitting it, they are flattening it out until it becomes thin and pliable to make into pots, vases, or whatever they are making. It takes one week to make a medium-sized pot and they must put the cobre back into the fire and take it out to bang on it 400 times before it is of the size needed to make into their ware. It was amazing to see 4 men hitting this 6” wide and ½” thick piece of copper in perfect unison without missing a beat. The banging created a lot of noise, and I am sure they are all deaf by now.

After Santa Clara, we moved to another small town called Patzcuaro. This town has a lot of churches and artisans. When we first got there, we went into a huge cathedral and went in while a quinceanera was going on. This is when a Mexican girl turns 15, and she is now considered a woman, so it’s kinda’ like our Sweet 16, except a lot more elaborate. She wears a wedding-type dress, sometimes white, other times colored, and has what looks like bridesmaids with her. She then has escorts with her in tuxes, and there is a church service and then a reception. Very cool.

I then went and did some shopping. Yeah!! Bought some copper wares and some jewelry. After a long day shopping and site seeing, we headed back to Morelia. After I got settled, the group met up for dinner and then headed to the centro. On Saturday nights, they have a huge fireworks show. We went to a bar on the roof of a hotel and had some drinks and watched the show.
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Friday, April 24, 2009

Disc golf tourney to raise money for KCPD’s Mounted Patrol Unit


The Friends of the Kansas City Missouri Mounted Patrol is sponsoring the Inaugural Disc Golf Tournament on June 6 to raise money for KCPD’s Mounted Patrol Unit.

The Tournament will begin at 8 a.m. Saturday, June 6, at the Thornfield Disc Golf Course, 6701 W. 167th St., in Stilwell, Kan. It will feature a demonstration by the Mounted Patrol Unit that will include how the horses are trained and explain the benefits of horses in their supporting role in Law Enforcement.

The Thornfield Disc Golf Course was built by Suburban Lawn & Garden in early 2008 and is the only private course of its kind in the Kansas City metro area. Disc Golf began in the 1960s as an offshoot of the Frisbee craze, and there are now more than 2,500 disc golf courses throughout the country.

This Disc Golf Tournament is sponsored by The Friends of the Kansas City Missouri Mounted Patrol, a 501c3 nonprofit organization that was established for the express purpose of providing financial support for the Kansas City Police Department’s Mounted Patrol Unit. Previous funds raised have enabled members of KCPD’s Mounted Patrol to train in Canada with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and paid for special veterinary care for the horses. The money also has been used to purchase heated water buckets, specialized tack and other supplies for the Unit.

KCPD’s Mounted Patrol Unit consists entirely of donated horses and is housed in stables at Swope Park.

To get a registration form for the tournament, go to the Mounted Patrol’s Web site at and click on “Fund-raising events,” or call 816-331-3036.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Take Your Child to Work Day at KCPD

Take Your Child to Work Day is always a big event here at the Kansas City Police Department. Family is very important to the officers and civilian employees who work here, and today serves as a chance to show kids what mom and dad do. We let children tour our Tactical Team armored vehicle, the Bear. We also made visitor photo IDs for them and took them on tours all over the department. And I got to meet and take pictures with the children of more than 120 KCPD members. Here are some photos from the day. Click on them to see a larger version.

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Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Police announce results of 420 operation


Police arrested four people for DUI, 10 people who possessed marijuana and a homicide suspect during a special “420” mobilization Monday.

The Kansas City Police Department and four other law enforcement agencies in the metro area teamed up on April 20 (4/20) to arrest those who were driving high. The day is a dubious holiday for the cannabis culture that encourages users to smoke marijuana, and police wanted to prevent DUIs associated with it. They also wanted to educate the public that a DUI isn’t just from alcohol but can result from driving drugged, too. So they saturated areas around schools as well as known party houses and areas of drug use.

During the special 420 operation, police checked 137 drivers, 36 pedestrians and 14 residences. The following resulted from those checks:

Arrests and recovered firearms
* 4 DUI Arrests, 2 of which were drug-related.
* 12 City Drug Arrests
- 8 of which involved marijuana recovered
- 2 of which involved marijuana pipes
- 2 of which involved methamphetamine pipes
* 4 Felony Drug Arrests
- 3 of which involved methamphetamine recovered
- 1 of which Alprazolam recovered
* 2 Firearms were recovered

Warrants cleared
State warrants cleared: 10
City warrants cleared: 59
Juvenile warrants cleared: 1

Citations issued during 420 project
Speeding 14 Signal Violation 4
Uninsured 14 Careless Driving 1
No Seat Belt 7 Other Hazardous 25
Other Non-Hazardous 31 Suspended Drivers 10

Other highlights
* A wanted homicide suspect was arrested on Kansas City’s East Side.
* A runaway juvenile was located in the Northwest portion of Kansas City.
* An illegal immigrant was arrested and turned over to I.C.E. Agents in the Northwest portion of Kansas City.

Kansas City police arrested 70 people in 2008 for DUIs that involved marijuana or other drug use. So far this year, Kansas City, Mo., has recorded five fatality crashes in which drug use was involved, and pending toxicology reports could push that number higher. In 2007 and 2008, the counties of Jackson, Platte and Clay had nine people die in car crashes in which the driver was impaired by drugs, including marijuana. Another 40 people had disabling injuries in such crashes.

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Police ask public to report sales of stolen meat


If someone has tried to sell you meat on the street, call police.

Police discovered six stolen big-rig trailers in a lot at 1307 Kensington on Monday. The trailers had been carrying frozen chicken, ribs and snack cakes and were taken from food companies headquartered in Arkansas, Iowa, Oklahoma and Kansas. The owner of one of the trailers reported that $400,000 worth of ribs were gone. Another reported that 35,000 pounds of frozen chicken was missing. Police do not yet know how much chicken and snack cakes had been taken from the other trailers.

Detectives are concerned that those who stole the meat might be trying to sell it on the streets, in parking lots or door to door. If anyone has been approached or seen someone selling the meat, they should call the East Patrol Property Crimes Division at 816-234-5535 or the TIPS Hotline at 816-474-TIPS (8477).

In addition to the meat being stolen goods, police are concerned about the safety of the food.

Seat belt enforcement results

In a special one-day Click It or Ticket mobilization April 15, Kansas City Police issued a total of 656 traffic tickets, including 158 for seat belt violations, 370 for speeding violations and 2 violations for driving while intoxicated.

We hope that enforcements like these will raise the seat belt usage rate in Missouri, where nearly one in four people still don't wear one. Of the 23 fatality vehicle crashes in Kansas City so far this year, just two of those killed were wearing seat belts.

Our enforcement efforts aren't over. The regularly scheduled annual two-week Click It or Ticket mobilization will take place May 18-30.

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Friday, April 17, 2009

420 enforcement


Metro police will be out in force to combat those driving under the influence on a day known as a holiday in the drug culture.

April 20, or 4/20, has come to be a day of widespread marijuana use, which Sergeant Daniel Graves of KCPD’s Traffic Investigation Unit said can mean danger on the road.

“People need to recognize that a DUI is not just from alcohol,” he said.

In fact, Kansas City police arrested 70 people in 2008 for DUIs that involved marijuana or other drug use. This number does not include those who were both drunk and high or those who refused a breath test.

Driving high can be deadly. So far this year, Kansas City, Mo., has recorded five fatality crashes in which drug use was involved, and pending toxicology reports could push that number higher. In 2007 and 2008, the counties of Jackson, Platte and Clay had nine people die in car crashes in which the driver was impaired by drugs, including marijuana. Another 40 people had disabling injuries in such crashes.

The Kansas City Missouri Police Department has coordinated with other area police departments to saturate metro roadways April 20 to enforce traffic laws with a specific eye out for those who may be using marijuana. The officers will pay special attention to areas around schools.

Sergeant Graves said he wants to use the day to educate parents about the meaning of “420” and the culture surrounding it.

“It’s in all kinds of rap, hip hop and rock songs your kids may be listening to,” he said. “We’re finding that many parents don’t realize this code.”

The common story of how 420 came to represent the cannabis culture is that of high schoolers in San Rafael, Calif., who met after school in 1971 to smoke weed at 4:20 p.m. because that’s when detention let out. Marijuana enthusiasts extended that to 4/20, or April 20.

This year, 4/20 will mean heightened police presence on Kansas City-area roads and near schools.

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Thursday, April 16, 2009

In praise of call-takers & dispatchers

I’d like to congratulate a few of our unsung heroes today. The call-takers and dispatchers in our 911 Call Center work behind the scenes every day to protect the public. It can be a thankless and stressful job, especially now when under-staffing is causing all of our call-takers and dispatchers to work mandatory over time.

But fortunately, the Mid-America Regional Council is taking the time to thank these men and women who are so integral to public safety agencies across the Kansas City metropolitan area with a Telecommunicators Appreciation Celebration tomorrow as part of National Public Safety Telecommunicator week. I’d particularly like to congratulate the winners from our department: Tayon Jackson, Dawn Deterding, Jane Hill and Carrie Brown.

Tayon Jackson won the Outstanding Individual Performance in a Critical Incident Award. On Jan. 7, 2009, a woman called 911 and said she had been out with a friend but was then drugged and raped. She didn’t know where she was. As the woman spoke, her speech became more slurred as she was slipping toward unconsciousness. Tayon persevered in asking her questions about what landmarks she could see around her and eventually figured out where she was. Tayon was able to get an ambulance and police to the victim to get her the help she needed.

Dawn Deterding, Jane Hill and Carrie Brown won the Outstanding Team Performance in a Critical Incident Award. These women helped coordinate the rescue of 17-year-old Jacob Fischer, who was trapped in his wrecked car for 32 hours and badly hurt before anyone found him. You can read more about that ordeal here.

I want to say a big thank you to these call-takers and dispatchers and all the others who handle Kansas City, Mo.’s approximately 900,000 calls to the 911 Center every year. Police work couldn’t happen without them.

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Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Click It or Ticket April 15

As Kansas City faces its highest rate of traffic fatalities in years, Kansas City police, in cooperation with other area law enforcement agencies, will be out on the streets in force tomorrow, April 15, to crack down on safety belt law violators and reduce highway fatalities.

To date this year, 23 people have died in traffic crashes in Kansas City, Mo., compared to 11 at this time last year. Sixteen of those who have died this year were not wearing safety belts. Only two who died were wearing them. (The other five were on motorcycles, other motor vehicles or were pedestrians).

Nearly one in four Missourians still fail to regularly wear their safety belts when driving or riding in a motor vehicle. Among those least likely to buckle up: males under age 25, pick-up truck drivers and their passengers, people who live in rural areas and night-time drivers.

Failure to regularly wear a safety belt can be deadly. In 2007, a driver in a Missouri traffic crash had a 1 in 32 chance of being killed if they were not wearing a seat belt. In cases where the driver wore a seat belt, their chance of being killed was 1 in 1,294.

Sgt. Grant Ruark of the Traffic Enforcement Unit said that regular seat belt use is the single most effective way to protect people and reduce fatalities in motor vehicle crashes.

For information on Missouri seat belt usage, visit

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Friday, April 10, 2009

Police ID homicide victim

Police have identified the victim shot in the 5900 block of Walrond at 5:30 p.m. April 8 as Travis T. McGaugh, an 18-year-old Kansas City, Mo., resident.

Kansas City Police were called to a residence in the 5900 block of Walrond in regard to a shooting. Upon arrival, McGaugh was located in the street with no signs of life. He was transported to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead. A second shooting victim was located at a local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. It appears the two victims were sitting in a vehicle when a black male shot them and fled the scene in a red Ford truck. Detectives are interviewing witnesses and ask anyone with information to call the TIPS Hotline at 816.474.8477. There are no suspects in custody at this time.

Suspicious death upgraded to homicide

A suspicious death investigation in the 1100 block of Pacific has been upgraded to a homicide, and police have a suspect in custody.

At about 2:30 p.m. yesterday, April 9, police were called to a residence in the 1100 block of Pacific to check the welfare of a person who had not been heard from for several days. When officers arrived, the caller said she went to her mother's home, and after getting no response at the door, called 911. A search warrant was obtained, and the 43-year-old mother was found dead inside her home. The victim has been positively identified as Crystal Caldwell, a white female Kansas City resident. Anyone with information is asked to call the TIPS Hotline at 816.474.8477.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Budget update

At today’s Board of Police Commissioners business meeting, we announced the creation of a 12-person task force to review and make recommendations about how to cut the department’s budget by $15 million, in response to the city’s cut in the department’s budget.

The task force will have to present their recommendations to the Board of Police Commissioners by April 28 because the new fiscal year starts May 1. Two deputy chiefs will co-chair the group. Other members will include: two members of the Fraternal Order of Police’s executive committee; representatives from each of the department’s five bureaus; Mayor Mark Funkhouser; and City Council members Cathy Jolly and Jan Marcason.

The budget task force will review several recommendations from the budget office to cut costs. Some of these could include laying off the recruits now in the Police Academy who are scheduled to graduate in August, leaving vacant many law enforcement and civilian positions (at present, there are 42 law enforcement and 41 civilian vacancies), requiring unpaid furloughs for all department members and cutting overtime hours – which could affect everything from manpower on the street to being put on hold when you call 911.

We are doing everything in our power to minimize the effects of these cuts on our employees and on the community. We are aggressively pursuing federal grant funding, but we must compete against police departments from all over the country for it. In addition, today the Board of Police Commissioners approved an incentive program to encourage early retirements.

Final decisions on what will be cut will not be made until April 28. We are being very transparent with the process, and I trust the ad hoc budget task force and our budget office will make the best out of a bad situation.

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Wednesday, April 8, 2009

KCPD asks victims to claim stolen property recovered from burglary ring


Kansas City Missouri Police property crimes detectives have recovered more than $150,000 worth of property from a major burglary ring and now need the victims to come forward to claim their belongings.

Anyone who believes they were a victim of these burglaries should call the Metro Patrol Division Property Crimes Section at 816-234-5525. They should be prepared to describe the objects that were stolen.

The burglary ring has been in operation over the past four months, mostly from Wornall to State Line roads, 55th to 85th streets. Two men, Thomas E. Simmons and Michael S. Dorch, have been charged with some of the burglaries, with more charges pending against them and other individuals. Detectives followed them for weeks, and on Saturday night, April 4, searched four homes: three in Kansas City and one in Lee’s Summit. All had stolen property associated with the burglary ring.

The burglars operated mostly at night. Detectives recovered a large amount of high-end jewelry, more than a dozen televisions, six computers and five stolen cars. They also recovered tools stolen from houses that were being renovated.

The burglary ring bust is largely the result of the work of the Metro Patrol Division Property Crimes Task Force. The task force started on December 7, 2008, to combat a growing burglary problem in Metro Patrol and other parts of the city. The task force takes six Metro Patrol officers – two from each of KCPD’s three shifts – and puts them on special assignment to partner with the Metro Property Crimes detectives for 28 days. Officers rotate their time on the task force, serving 28 days with property crime detectives and then going back out in the field.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Victim killed in Independence Ave. apt. identified

At 3:18 a.m. Sunday, April 5, officers were called to 1210 Independence Avenue to investigate a shooting. Upon arrival, they located a man dead in an upstairs apartment. The man appeared to have been shot to death, and no one else was in the apartment.

The victim in this homicide has been identified as 27-year-old William E. Harmon, of Kansas City, Mo. There is no one in custody, and anyone with information is asked to call the TIPS Hotline at 816-474-TIPS (8477).

What are your KCPD questions?

If you’ve had a burning question about KCPD, you can get it answered in the new Town Hall Tuesday feature on Hot 103 Jamz, KPRS, with Sean Tyler. I’ve been invited to come on the show and answer the public’s questions. To prepare for that, I’d like to know what you want to know.

Have you wondered about how we operate? Is there a rumor you’ve heard that you want the truth about? Is there something you've always wanted to ask a cop but have never gotten the chance to? Please submit your questions to I’ll try to answer as many as I can in the 30-minute show. Once we get all the questions lined up, I’ll let you know what date the show is going to air.

One of our department’s critical values is transparency, so I’m really excited to have this forum to inform and communicate with the community we serve. I appreciate the invitation from KPRS and look forward to hearing your questions.

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Thursday, April 2, 2009

Incident at 10th & Grand

UPDATE: Police have identified the victim as 47-year-old Dwayne E. Smith of Kansas City, Mo. He is pictured above. There are no suspects in custody, and detectives ask anyone with information to call the TIPS Hotline.


Officers were called at 9:58 p.m. Wednesday night, April 1, to 10th and Grand to investigate an accident involving a pedestrian. A 47-year-old man was struck by a vehicle driven by a 53-year-old female. The female said she ran over the man, who was lying in the middle of the road.

During the investigation of the accident, officers found surveillance video from a nearby business. A review of the video revealed the victim was assaulted by a man and was knocked down, landing in the middle of Grand before the accident. The suspect fled with another male. The 47-year-old man was transported to an area hospital where he died from his injuries.

Homicide detectives are working with accident investigators on the case. Detectives are consulting with the medical examiner to determine if the death will be investigated as a homicide or a fatality accident. It is unknown at this time when that ruling will be made.

The dead man's family has not been notified, so we cannot yet release his name. Anyone with information is asked to call the TIPS Hotline at 816-474- (TIPS) 8477.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Homicide victim identified


At about 12:47 p.m. March 31, a woman called 911 reporting her husband had been shot at 6407 Manchester. Upon arriving, officers were led to the body of a male on the second-floor breezeway of the apartment building. Police have identified the victim as 34-year-old Ahmed J. Johnson of Kansas City, Mo.
There are no suspects in custody at this time, and detectives ask anyone with information to call the TIPS Hotline at 816-474-8477.
Mr. Johnson's killing is Kansas City's 28th homicide in 2009, compared to 24 at this date in 2008.