Reader Feels Officers Violated Rights



I read what the Payson Roundup newspaper printed about "Residents being unhappy about 911 service delays. Mr. Fiestad should be commended for his courage to speak out. I found it interesting that the paper didn't indicate any response from the police department concerning their response times to 911 calls i.e. ... what their average response times are ... etc.

On Sept. 20, 2006, Police Officer Christopher Harold was dispatched at 10:11 a.m. to a 911 call concerning a violation of a protective order occurring at the Payson court house, but he never made contact. The incident was recorded on the "Court Minute Entry" (records).
After the incident, I went to the police station and left information concerning the incident. A few weeks later, I contacted the police department to request a copy of the complaint and a report. The clerk stated "no report had been made." Then 30 days later, I contacted a supervisor at the Payson Police Station to find out if a report had been sent to the town attorney for review. The officer stated that a report had not been made. I then demanded that a police report be generated, as I felt it was a "victim's right" to have a police report forwarded to the town attorney.
At the time of my phone call to the Payson Police Department on Oct. 20, 2006, the supervising officer stated that Officer Harold was derelict in his duties and his actions were inexcusable. This phone call was witnessed by a Maricopa County Victim's Advocate who stated that what the officer had done was a violation of victim's rights, that as a victim of a crime you are entitled to have a police report generated.

This incident was the second time an officer failed in his duties concerning me. The first was on Sept. 25, 2005 when an officer failed to properly investigate and to promptly provide the town attorney exculpatory evidence of forgery and fraud that had been committed by persons living in my home. This failure by these officers to investigate the evidence before them was a violation of my constitutional rights.

On March 15, I found out that Officer Harold had been fired for a taser incident and that he, in fact, had been delinquent in filing police reports in more than 80 cases. This did not surprise me at all. It only confirmed that other people had been violated by him as well.

I wrote the Payson mayor, the town manager, county attorney, the attorney general, the Governor of Arizona and the Attorney General of the United States letters, concerning what I felt was a police department that was out of control.

I received no response from the mayor or town manager. The response letters from state officials indicated that they had no jurisdiction over the Payson Police Department and could do nothing for me. The Attorney General for the United States of America never responded.
I found it astounding that I could defend and support this country until my retirement from the U.S. Navy and that in my time of need, government officials would claim to be powerless in an effort to correct this injustice at the Payson Police Department.

In closing, let me say here that I do appreciate, at least one man's effort and courage in speaking out.

Robin Petersen, CDR USNR - ( Ret.)

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