6 Detroit Police Officers are being charged with federal extortion charges due to their alleged involvement in a huge bribery scandal. These officers are being accused of accepting bribes from local car companies such as tow companies repair companies in exchange for information on the whereabouts of stolen and abandoned cars. Further details about what was being done with these cars haven’t been disclosed yet.
Out of the 6 accused officers, 5 have pleaded guilty and 1 is still awaiting trial.
Although the scandal has been under investigation for 3 years, the issue has plagued the department for up to 12 years according to Detroit Police Chief James Craig. Chief Craig also stated that “these officers do not represent this department, and the vast majority of the Detroit Police Officers do fine work”. These officers face extortion charges that carry a maximum sentence of up to 20 years for each count.
Here’s a brief overview of the officers who are involved including their charges and their current status with the police force:
Deonne Dotson, 45: Facing 6 counts of Extortion, suspended with pay
Charles Wills, 52: Plead guilty to 2 counts of Extortion
James Robertson, 45: Retired, Plead guilty to 2 counts of Extortion
Jamil Martin, 46: Retired, Plead guilty to 1 count of Extortion
Martin Tutt, 29: Resigned, Plead guilty to 2 counts of Extortion
Anthony Careathers, 52: Retired, Plead guilty to 1 count of Extortion
There are also 2 other unknown officers who were involved in this, but they are not facing criminal charges and only administrative charges.
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Sometimes the people who you think you can trust the most are the last people you can trust. We are constantly being reminded that everything in this world has a price. Do you remember in Spiderman when Peter Parker’s grandfather said: “with great power comes great responsibility”? Often times those in power tend to abuse the responsibilities they are trusted with. John Dalberg-Acton, a 19th-century historian once said: “power tends to corrupt; absolute power corrupts absolutely”.
The police are supposed to be there to protect us, not to take advantage of us. As American Citizens, it’s important that we do our best to make sure that the people we’re putting into positions of power are worthy of our trust and have our safety best interests and safety in mind. With the constant theme of Police brutality and corruption popping up all over the country, we need to take some time to think about how we can make improvements to the law enforcement system. Maybe this means stronger background checks, or even voting on individual Police officers. One thing’s for sure though, something needs to be done.