Claremore Daily Progress

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February 1, 2013

DA Steidley targets CPD officer with Giglio

DA must defend accusations, Chief Brown perplexed by action

(Continued)

CLAREMORE —

Singer and city officials are asking for a hearing before a judge to determine the validity of Steidley’s information in the rape case, which potentially could lead to appeals of convictions in other cases the detective investigated.

“We’re perplexed about why these allegations have arisen 18 months after the officer’s investigation ended,” city attorney Matt Ballard said in an interview, referring to the rape case. “The city does not agree with the district attorney’s allegations. We believe this matter should be decided by a neutral judge, rather than by unilateral action of the DA’s office that will destroy a distinguished officer’s career.”

“ The determination of the alleged wrongful act was based on evidence which she presented to me at that time. Immediately afterwards, I reviewed the evidence and am perplexed and categorically disagree with the DA’s conclusion as to the facts on which she based her determination,” said Brown. “In my opinion, the determination of validity of the allegations in such a matter should be determined by a finder of fact or court proceeding. The ramifications and destructive nature of such allegations against an officer with such an impeccable career demand that due process be granted when the facts are in such question. This is not a matter of trying to hide any dirty laundry in the Police Department. It is a matter of affording an Officer who has a track record such as this one due process, not convicting him or ostracizing him before he has been granted due process, one of the benchmarks of our justice system; a process which is allowed everyone alleged to have committed a crime or unlawful act.” 

Steidley, who at first agreed to bring the matter to a judge but later changed her mind, said she has the authority to decide whether information about an officer’s credibility should be disclosed.

District Judge Dynda Post has issued a gag order on the lawyers involved in the rape of a juvenile, in which the defendant pled guilty.

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