03/31/2007

Spokane, Wa. chief invokes rarely used rule to back officer

By Jody Lawrence-Turner
Spokane Spokesman Review

SPOKANE, Wa. - Spokane's police chief is so confident that one of her officers acted appropriately in Saturday's fatal shooting of a man that she ordered the officer to issue a rarely used statement to investigators rather than submit to standard questioning,, she said Wednesday.

Chief Anne Kirkpatrick said she ordered Sgt. Dan Torok to issue a statement about his actions; if he had refused, he could have been fired, she said. The contents of the statement, however, can't be used against the officer in a criminal investigation.
 
"There's nothing from the independent investigation … that makes me feel the officer did anything but what he had to," Kirkpatrick said.

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