Silt to conduct internal investigation into leaked police dept. information
After receiving several calls from concerned citizens regarding Silt police data that had not been verified by Police Chief Mike Kite and was inaccurate, Silt will conduct an internal and external investigation to figure out who released the information.
At Monday’s Board of Trustees meeting, the board discussed the matter alongside Kite, who remained in complete support of his department, and approved to spend up to $5,000 for the investigation.
“I want to be transparent and up front with the board,” Town Administrator Pamela Woods told the board. “I don’t know how some of this information came out of my office. This was behind closed doors.”
The information released was regarding Silt police statistics for 2016 and 2017 that Chief Kite had not yet properly vetted and had incomplete data.
Woods told the board that, because the information was released before it was vetted, it appears that “we are trying to hide statistics, and we are not.”
“What I’m concerned about is that this information is being made public and people are pressuring the board to make decisions based on information that has not been verified,” said Trustee Aron Diaz.
“I’d like to do an internal/external investigation on this matter,” Woods said. “I’m concerned how this information got out.”
Woods said that the information may have come out of town hall or the police department, but she cannot be sure until an investigation is conducted.
“I hope this is cleared up as quickly as possible,” Diaz added. “I’m in favor of any investigation that you want to do.”
He said, at the end of the day, he wants to make sure the public is safe and has the coverage it needs, but he also wants to make sure they don’t have a false sense of insecurity.
“We need to make sure the public is given accurate information,” he added.
Kite said that he’s been asked about additional police coverage in the past and he feels Silt has the coverage it needs.
“An additional officer is not necessary at this time,” he said. “Call loads are just the same as they were last year.”