SUPPORT OISIT REFORM
Few things contribute more to the tension between law enforcement and communities than the prevalence of police-involved fatalities.¹
Officer-involved shootings are high profile incidents that require a thorough, unbiased and totally documented investigation that provides for the uniform treatment of all parties.
In Johnson County, Kansas, officer-involved shootings are investigated by the Johnson County Officer-Involved Shooting Investigation Team (OISIT). The team was created by the Johnson County Chiefs and Sheriffs Association and is made up of selected members of the eighteen local police departments, Johnson County Sheriff's Office and the Johnson County District Attorney's Office. Their investigations are governed by the Johnson County Officer Involved Shooting Investigation Team Procedures and Protocols Manual.
As a result of the lack of transparency, accountability, and oversight in prior Johnson County officer-involved shooting investigations, the following changes to the Johnson County Shooting Investigation Team are proposed.
Proposed changes related to the Johnson County Officer-Involved Shooting Investigation Team:
- The DA's office maintains a fully detailed OISIT page supporting transparency including links to the Procedures and Protocols manual, MOU, all officer-involved shooting press releases, and contact information for the Johnson County Chiefs and Sheriffs Association and OISIT.
- Each participating law enforcement agency should, in the interest of transparency, maintain a link on their website to the DA's OISIT page.
- The summary prepared by the report officer and the report released by the DA should include all supporting crime lab forensic data and analysis with an emphasis on accuracy.
¹ Lucy Lang, Executive Director of the Institute for Innovation in Prosecution