New documents detail conversations between 2 officers and Youth Explorers
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- More than 1,000 pages document the graphic details between former LMPD Officers Brandon Wood and Kenneth Betts, and underage members of the LMPD Youth Explorer program.
The officers are accused of committing sex crimes with teenage boys. David Yates represents some of the former youth Explorer members.
“I think that it is further evidence that there's a clear abuse of power and position by the abusers and the manipulation of the victims,” said Yates.
The documents from LMPD's integrity unit unveil social media exchanges between Wood and a former explorer, dated back to 2011, showing a back and forth where Wood asks the explorer to come over to his house.
The same explorer also had similar communication with Betts, the former officer making sexual suggestions and meeting up.
The documents state that the former explorer member didn't really want the sexual encounters with Wood or Betts, but he thought they would like him better.
“Unfortunately, in these situations, the abusers are often able to coerce and manipulate victims over a period of time, where they would even idolize and hold their abusers to a high regard,” said Yates.
There was much more detailing of explorers saying they were either propositioned, molested or intimidated by Wood or Betts.
One said he asked Betts to go on a ride-along and documents said he met at Betts house, where Betts forced himself on the teen. When the teen refused, he said Betts did not take him on the ride-along.
In another statement, a former explorer referred to Wood as a "dangerous person for me to be around," adding "I'm scared of him, of what he would do." That person blames Wood for why he left the program.
Wood was fired from the police department once he was indicted.
Betts quit the department when a female explorer accused Betts of sending her inappropriate pictures. Her mother told investigators she received a call from the head of the Explorer program. Lt. Curtis Flaherty who she said told the mother to keep quiet.
“I think it is unfortunate that it also further evidences the cover-up that was put into place by the people in higher positions of authority and power.”
Wood's attorney got back to WHAS11 News and said his client maintains his innocence.