The mayor can’t understand what the police did wrong
Concerned that “everyone is looking at Marion like we’re a bunch of bastards now,” Mayor David Mayfield tries to deflect blame for the illegal Aug. 11 raid on Marion County Register Maskin and defends appointed Chief of Police Gideon Cody.
And in an interview published Saturday in the Wichita Eagle, Mayfield admitted, he previously told the Wichita Eagle: register, He is consulted in advance of the raid but says Cody, whom he hired two months ago, should not be held responsible.
“The police department did what the judge allowed them to do,” Mayfield said.
Defending Cody and six other law enforcement officers who raided the newspaper, the home of co-owners Joanne and Eric Meyer, and the home of his political rival Deputy Mayor Ruth Herbel, Mayfield said he was “not sure exactly what they (the police) did.” mistake.”
Meanwhile, he admitted that he never served a search warrant in his previous career as a police chief and highway patrolman. He now works part-time as a prisoner transport officer. His term as mayor is due to end in January. He is not a candidate for re-election.
Although he has the power to stop Cody, he repeated his previous statement in front of him register He won’t, at least not until after the Kansas Bureau of Investigation reports on its investigation.
as register It was previously reported that this investigation, which focused on whether a separate system reserved exclusively for law enforcement officers was accessed, included interviews more than a week earlier with sources who provided documents to the people targeted in the raid.
The sources, although identified in the search warrant affidavits, were not interviewed by any law enforcement officers prior to the searches.
None of the people were searched. They have also not been interviewed by law enforcement officers since the raid.
Marion City Council did not vote to impose a gag order on the matter, but the agendas for all city council meetings since the raid included notices, apparently on orders from Mayfield or City Manager Brogan Jones, that the council would not discuss the matter in session. meetings.
Another meeting is scheduled for 4:30 p.m. Tuesday in the basement of the Marion Community Center.
The searches of the newspaper and the homes of two of Mayfield’s most vocal critics were condemned not only by journalists, but also by seasoned law enforcement officers around the world.
As he did in a previous interview with register, Mayfield appears to be pinning all the blame on District Attorney Joel Ince, whose brother and sister-in-law own stakes in a restaurant implicated in the matter, and District Judge Laura Feyer, who may have covered up previous drink-driving arrests.
Carrie Newell, the restaurant owner involved in the case, admitted to driving illegally for 15 years after failing to complete the steps required to get her license back after being convicted of drink driving.
Her estranged husband and ex-boyfriend admits to providing Herbel and the newspaper with copies of documents indicating this fact.
as register According to her, Cody called Newell and told her she was a victim of identity theft and improper computer access, even though all of the documents in question were obtained legally from a public website, and even though both Herbel and the newspaper had previously reported to authorities that they had So he received them.
Mayfield told the Eagle that if there was something wrong with the search warrants that led to the searches, the district attorney or judge should deny them.
He asserted that Ince played an active role in obtaining the arrest warrants, reviewed the arrest warrants, and had someone from his office hand them over to Villar for approval.
“I checked again with Chief Cody, and he assured me it went to the district attorney and the district attorney examined it and then had his secretary pass it on to the judge,” Mayfield wrote in an email to The Eagle. Chief Cody even has emails keeping the district attorney informed about this investigation, which begins August 8th.
It is inexplicable why none of the arrest warrant applications were filed with the District Court until three days after the raid and why the applications, which require the signature of the person making the application notarized at the time of signing, were notarized by the same judge.
the register In possession of a statement signed by the District Court indicating that there were no search warrant requests with the court on the day of the raid.
The requests themselves, postmarked as submitted three days later, indicate that Fiar notarized the requests and approved the arrest warrants two hours before the raid.
In a statement released by the KBI on August 16, Enci confirmed that he did not review the documents until two days after the raid and immediately determined that there was no probable reason to conduct the searches.
Enci’s statement did not explain why it took an additional two days, only after the KBI contacted him, to announce his decision and request the withdrawal of the arrest warrants and the return of all seized materials.
“Why didn’t he do it in the first place?” Mayfield asked. “My police department presents a valid search warrant signed by the judge. I mean, they assume it’s valid because it was approved, so I’m not sure exactly what they did wrong.
“Days later, he came out and said, ‘Okay, I’ve reviewed the statement, and there’s no probable cause for a search warrant.'” Well, if he had done it in the first place, we wouldn’t be sitting here talking about it.
According to standards adopted by the American Bar Association, prosecutors involved in criminal investigations are supposed to review requests for search warrants before they are presented to a judicial officer.
However, Ince said in an email to The Eagle: “I do not write or approve search warrants…. Mr. Mayfield has not spoken to anyone in the county attorney’s office.
The August 11 searches, which Cody personally headed, included nearly all of the police officers and sheriff’s deputies on duty at the time.
An additional part-time officer was brought in specifically to help conduct the simultaneous raids, which Cody expected to brag to others in law enforcement would be the largest in the city’s history.
The raids drew international condemnation as an assault on press freedom and a violation of federal law.
Distraught and distraught by the raids, 98-year-old Meyer’s mother, Joanne Meyer, who was in reasonably good health, died of sudden cardiac arrest a day after officers stood guard over her home for hours before robbing and seizing her possessions. devices in what it described as “Hitler’s tactics”.
Throughout Mayfield’s term as mayor, both register Herbel was a frequent target of passionate denunciations from him.
In January, after Herbel led a successful campaign to repeal a charter law that would have revoked the public’s right to vote on city borrowing, Mayfield was centrally involved in the unsuccessful campaign to remove her from office.
But he denies having his dislike for registerMeyer and Herbel were in no way the reason they were targeted in the strikes, not the actual sources of the documents.
“I have zero involvement in this whole thing, and I receive death threats from supporters marion County Register,Mayfield said. “I don’t know anything about that. I really don’t.
“And I will tell you that the only thing I know about the situation that happened here – which is sad – is the fact that the President told me that one of my members was under investigation, and I told him then that I wouldn’t do it.” I don’t want to know anything about it. This is a criminal investigation. There’s no reason for me to know anything.”
the register He publicly condemned the threats against Mayfield, Cody, and other officials.
According to one search affidavit, City Manager Jones wrote to Mayfield on August 4 that the chief of police and the police department would not pursue the matter. This appears to change after a meeting later that day between Mayfield and Cody.
After Cody contacted her about the paper and Herbel received a copy of a letter about her drink-driving record, Newell, the restaurateur, went to a town hall meeting on August 7 and falsely accused the newspaper of illegally obtaining information and giving it to Herbel and Herbel. Herbel was falsely accused of posting it on social media.
In a conversation after the meeting, Newell admitted that she had already suspected that her ex-girlfriend Pam Mag, the true source of the document, had provided it to both of them. register and herbel. Herbel only sent it to Jones and only because of concerns about Newell’s pursuit of a liquor license.
the register She verified the information by checking the same publicly available government website Maag claimed to use to obtain it, but she did so with the help of the agency that runs the site and only to verify the information.
In a letter dated August 4, Meyer told Cody and Sheriff Jeff Swease that the newspaper would not run a story because it appeared to be a divorce case, but he remained concerned about the possibility of using law enforcement contacts to obtain the document. and about claims – later verified by anonymous sources – that police may have been ignoring Newell’s illegal driving.
“We have no desire to invade anyone’s privacy, especially if it was just an argument during the divorce,” Meyer wrote. “I do not feel comfortable sharing additional information unless you tell me that you have reason to believe that some crime or misconduct may have occurred and that additional information we may be able to provide can assist in any investigation.”
Neither Cody nor Swizz responded to Meyer’s message. The Cody raid, with officers from the Suez Division backing up officers from Cody, came one week later.
Cody, for his part, was aware at the time of the raid that register He was digging up his background with the Kansas City Police Department, where he left as a chief facing demotion after a series of complaints.
register Reporter Deb Gruver has been handling this investigation. She was not at work at the time the letter about Newell was investigated and her name was not mentioned in the arrest warrant.
However, the police violently confiscated her work computer and confiscated her cell phone during the raid, injuring one of her fingers again. She filed a federal lawsuit against Cody, alleging that he was retaliating against her for researching his background.
Newell’s liquor license will directly benefit Ensey’s brother and sister-in-law, who own the Historic Elgin Hotel and recently sold the restaurant inside it to Newell, a former employee. Enseys reportedly keeps a percentage of its revenue.
Joel Ince did not answer Eagle’s questions about his family’s financial ties to Newell.
The liquor license Newell sought was for off-premise food.
Half a year after the restaurant was sold, his non-transferable license to serve liquor remained in the name of Tammy, Joel Ince’s sister-in-law. However, it expired last week and has not been renewed yet.
Villar, who technically serves Morris County and not Marion County, will not face a retention election until next year.
However, multiple complaints about her have been filed with a state judicial commission, which plans to investigate later this month.