Instead of arresting women on prostitution charges, four Memphis police officers or former officers are accused of kidnapping and raping them, reports the Memphis Commercial Appeal. Police Director Larry Godwin said corrupt officers “are no different from any other thugs,” and vowed to go after any crooked cops. Three of the officers have resigned. The four bring to at least 29 the number of Memphis Police officers or police civilian employees indicted since 2004.
In the most recent indictments, three of the officers were on duty at the time of the alleged offenses. Three of the officers were hired in the mid- and late-1990s, when some standards were lowered as the city pushed hard to hire several hundred officers a year. In one graduating class, then-Director Walter Winfrey requested waivers from the state Peace Officers Standards and Training Commission for 28 candidates who had arrest records for offenses such as drunken driving and theft. That was nearly one-third of the recruit class.