Supervisors at the Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office were ordered to falsify a reserve deputy’s training records, giving him credit for field training he never took and firearms certifications he should not have received, sources told the Tulsa World.At least three of reserve deputy Robert Bates’ supervisors were transferred after refusing to sign off on his state-required training, multiple sources speaking on condition of anonymity told the World.
And it gets worse. The certifications have gone missing:
Additionally, Sheriff Stanley Glanz told a Tulsa radio station this week that Bates had been certified to use three weapons, including a revolver he fired at Harris. However, Glanz said the Sheriff’s Office has not been able to find the paperwork on those certifications.The sheriff’s deputy that certified Bates has moved on to work for the Secret Service, Glanz said during the radio interview.
Sounds like the deputy who did finally agree to sign off on Bates’ falsified records got a promotion.Tulsa “reserve deputy” Robert Bates shot and killed Eric Harris when Bates pulled the trigger on his firearm during a chase. Bates claimed he thought it was his Taser, not his firearm. Video footage was later released showing another deputy responding to Eric Harris’ final plea for help saying, “fuck your breath” just moments before Harris died. Robert Bates has been charged with second-degree manslaughter.
As more and more information comes to light, it is becoming clear that the Department of Justice and/or the state of Oklahoma need to immediately start clearing house at that the Tulsa County Sheriff’s office. Furthermore, the practice of hiring pay-for-play cops nationwide needs to be re-examined. Donating money and goods to police departments should not be an instant qualification to walk around with a gun and a badge.
As of this morning, the Sheriff’s office has responded:
Update: The Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office announced early Thursday it will conduct an internal review of the deputy reserve program.
One thing is clear—an outside agency needs to conduct this investigation beginning today. Right now. It’s time for Governor Mary Fallin and/or the Department of Justice to step in and take action today.
by Jen Hayden