A Hammond Indiana police officer's wife found her young daughter "cowering" in her bedroom. Her daughter said, "I want to tell you something, but I'm so scared... You're going to be mad or go to jail." She told her mom that her stepfather had been coming into her bedroom while Mommy was sleeping. The mom, who called police immediately, said it took persistence to get the police to respond to her phone call. When they did come, they treated the girl like she was an adult she said, and that the officers appeared more concerned about her husband as a police officer being involved - REPEATEDLY TELLING HER HE WAS ONE OF THEIR OWN.
She said that she got a second visit -
Officer "Billy" Shelton arrived with two other officers IN BLACK TACTICAL GEAR and told her that HER DAUGHTER WOULD BE GOING TO SCHOOL WITH ONE LEG - trying to intimidate her into not coming any further forward, or letting the girl cooperate by giving details to investigators. Her daughter was examined at the hospital and determined to have been molested.
"...The woman said all she was seeking in coming forward was justice and protection for her daughter..."
On October 23rd 2005 Officer Shelton was put on leave, the case was referred to the Lake County Sheriff's Police, but the media learned at the end of December that Chief Brian Miller put Shelton back on duty on November 23rd. Miller says he "neglected to" notify the overseeing Public Works Board of his decision, but that the mom decided not to pursue it and the investigation can't go any further without her cooperation. The media says he wouldn't commit to saying that the mother had actually recanted though.
"...The woman's phone number is no longer in service, and a message left with friends was not returned..."
I've decided to not mention the name of the accused molester because the mom and daughter are hanging in the balance and he has friends with tactical gear and threats. He's fired for having sex on duty in view of his police station cameras - and fired in a way that the Public Works Board assures that he can appeal to get his job back.
For the record, the officer accused of molestation was not arrested or charged for it. He was picked up. Then he was dropped off and advised to not go home.
I'll be tracking him.
My prayers to his cowering family.
Final thought, from Hammond Mayor Thomas McDermott Jr.:
"I support my chief. I think I have a great police chief. I think he has a tremendous amount of integrity. He makes difficult decisions, but the decisions he's making are in the BEST INTERESTS OF THE POLICE DEPARTMENT..."