Kansas City, MO

KCPD leaders allegedly direct officers to discriminate against minorities, ignore calls in non-white neighborhoods

Edy Zoo

Allegations of discrimination and ticket quotas rock KCPD as the lawsuit exposes troubling practices.Photo byBlake CheekonUnsplash

KANSAS CITY, MO. - A recent lawsuit filed by Edward Williams, a 44-year-old white KCPD official and 21-year veteran of the force, has alleged that KCPD leaders have directed officers to discriminate against minorities and ignore calls for assistance in non-white neighborhoods. According to Williams, the department has also imposed ticket quotas on officers and threatened them with unfavorable shifts if they failed to meet their quotas.

Williams's lawsuit further claims that KCPD leadership instructed officers to target minority neighborhoods to meet ticket quotas and to be "ready to kill everybody in the car" to meet those quotas. Williams's lawsuit accuses former Chief of Police Richard Smith of issuing this directive.

Williams's lawsuit also alleges that KCPD leadership instructed officers to respond only to calls from white neighborhoods in the north and south of Kansas City and to ignore calls from minority communities in the west and north of the city. The lawsuit claims that KCPD leaders made these instructions based on the belief that white residents were the only ones paying for the police.

The lawsuit further accuses KCPD leadership of discrimination against Williams based on age, race, and disabilities. In addition, Williams claims that he was subjected to discriminatory treatment due to his disabilities, which included injuries to his left knee and back, 40% hearing loss in both ears and surgery on his left shoulder following a car accident while he was working.

In response to Williams's allegations, the KCPD's current chief, Stacey Graves, issued a statement on Wednesday, stating that the department does not direct enforcement activities based on demographics. Instead, graves wrote that the department enforces traffic laws directly in areas with many crashes and where citizens have traffic complaints.

Williams's lawsuit comes at a time when KCPD is under scrutiny for its alleged racist hiring practices. In December 2022, the U.S. Department of Justice announced that it would look into these practices.

The allegations in Williams's lawsuit are shocking and, if true, represent a serious violation of the public trust. KCPD officers have to serve and protect all residents of Kansas City, regardless of their race or ethnicity. If KCPD leaders are directing officers to discriminate against minorities and ignore calls for assistance in non-white neighborhoods, they are failing in their duty to protect the public.

The allegations in Williams's lawsuit also raise serious questions about the ticket quotas imposed on KCPD officers. If officers are being forced to meet quotas to avoid unfavorable shifts, it is possible that they may be more concerned with issuing tickets than with serving and protecting the public.

The KCPD must take these allegations seriously and thoroughly investigate the practices alleged in Williams's lawsuit. The public should know whether KCPD officers are being directed to discriminate against minorities and ignore calls for assistance in non-white neighborhoods. If these allegations are true, the KCPD must immediately correct these practices and restore the public's trust in the department.

What steps do you think the KCPD should take to address the serious allegations of discrimination and ticket quotas outlined in Edward Williams's lawsuit, and how can the department rebuild trust with the communities it serves? Share your thoughts in the comments, and if you found this article worth reading, show some love and buy me a coffee. It will be greatly appreciated and might even prevent me from falling asleep on my keyboard.

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Edy Zoo is an author who writes about social subjects. He contributes to the ever-growing library of social critics. He approaches local social subjects and local news covering Auburn-Opelika and surrounding cities from an objective point of view. He also holds liberal views.

Auburn, AL

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