Wednesday April 23, 2014
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Once again the Payson Roundup curse has hit the fan. The story about a dispute between medical professionals has given the medical community a black eye without the reporter taking the time to collect the details of a story that is old news and non-news. When business partners split up, there are always hurt feelings and misunderstandings: that is why the partnership failed.
The role of the Roundup should be just that, to "roundup" the details and report the story without being biased or judgmental-neither of which was the case here. Is it possible this type of reporting could be contributing to the difficulty of getting good medical care in Payson?
No judge, fair or not, can adjudicate a case tainted by false accusations and tainted evidence. A grand jury is charged to make decisions based upon the evidence presented. If the prosecutor makes up false charges and presents tainted evidence the jury has no choice but to base its decision on the evidence. The charges against Dr Lowe were inaccurate and the evidence presented was tainted by the investigator's personal history with Dr Lowe and family problems. The Payson police allowed evidence tampering and the file was altered before presentation to the jury. Critical evidence was removed from the file that would have affected the decision of the grand jury. Together these errors led to an unfair indictment and a long and expensive trial process. Dr Lowe suffered losses to his medical practice and loss of income for the time until the not guilty verdict. The judge was unable to render a fair treatment of the case as presented by the prosecutor.
Why is this a news story? Isn't Payson accustomed to their law enforcement officers being impaired by alcohol on the job? Or by their personal compromises with mood altering chemical substances? Why should this be reported when other offenses remain hidden until the officer is secretly suspended or demoted? This is unfair to the usual and customary practices in a western town run by the typical sheriff!
No wonder the county prosecutor could not win cases: the charges were erroneous and the testimonies were contrived and the evidence tainted, as in the case of Dr Lowe.
A police department with problems of staffing positions would suggest the administrative command lacks the ability to plan and execute basic personnel strategy. What would a business do when faced with worker shortages? Recruit and train more workers. Are there no military police returning from duty who possibly could be qualified to serve in Payson?
Perhaps there are underlying flaws in the Payson police in regard to the way the department is managed and how the staff is trained. A well-run police department should have applicants eager to join and serve the community.
Is "soft on crime" the same as careless and unprofessional? The county prosecutor has allowed false evidence, unproved accusations, and sloppy evidence handling to bring unfair charges against citizens such as Dr Lowe. The Payson police investigators used trumped up charges to rig a grand jury into an indictment that was a personal vendetta by police personnel. Is anyone watching the county and city officials who are running a personal fiefdom?
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