Dallas officials hope to report by April on went wrong in the city’s police fake-drugs scandal, reports the Dallas Morning News. Decisions on punishment for officers won’t come until later. An investigation into the 2001 arrests of more than two dozen people on bogus drug charges had involved officers of the police internal affairs division, which finds infractions by officers.
City Attorney Madeleine Johnson replaced those officers after a lawyer complained that standard procedures for the investigating officers’ conduct weren’t being followed. Investigators are looking for violations of departmental rules related to the arrests on the basis of drug evidence later found to be billiards chalk. A separate investigation by special prosecutor Dan Hagood is focused on criminal wrongdoing. It faces a rapidly closing three-year statute of limitations.
Jesse Diaz of the League of United Latin American Citizens is concerned about the involvement of so many police investigators in the inquiry. “When you have one of your own investigating your own, the public will always question that,” he said. “We should have had more independent people, more people from the community to do this.”