FBI possibly investigating Explorer Program allegations

Council calls for independent investigation of LMPD’s troubled Explorer program 
↓ Advertisement ↓

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- “We need to have someone from the outside look at what has taken place and what hasn't taken place,” said Councilman David James, District 6.

Some council members say they want the FBI to get involved. This comes after a lawsuit was filed alleging that a former LMPD officer and current officer sexually abused a male in the Youth Explorer Program, a program designed for kids interested in becoming cops. 

“We are not comfortable with the people who made the decisions three or four years ago doing the investigations of themselves now,” said Councilman James Peden, District 23.

Councilman James Peden is referring to an investigation that started July 2013. WHAS11 News reported back in October that former Officer Kenneth Betts had been investigated for improper contact with a female Explorer, but the investigation was closed.

A memo signed by Chief Steve Conrad says due to Betts’ resignation, no further action needed to be taken.

We asked council members why they've call for an independent investigation months after the information was made public.

↓ Advertisement ↓

“Now that the chief has gone forward with the Commonwealth's Attorney to present files to him and since that point and time we have received many communications from officers indicating maybe there's more that needs to be looked at,” Councilman James said.

Councilman James says he has been in contact with the FBI and they will do a preliminary investigation. A spokesperson with the FBI sent a statement saying they are aware of the allegations regarding the Explorer program but they cannot confirm or deny the existence or nonexistence of an investigation.           

Mayor Greg Fischer, who suspended the Explorer Program, says he appreciates the council's suggestion.

“To me it's all about transparency and accountability so I'm looking at all kinds of options here,” Mayor Greg Fischer said.

WHAS11 also tried to speak with Chief Steve Conrad who was expected to be at an event on Thursday night.  He did not make it to that event and an LMPD spokesperson referred us back to the mayor's statement.