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44 Idaho police officers disciplined for misconduct in 2020

May 17, 2021 GMT

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — In 2020, 44 Idaho police officers had their law enforcement certifications revoked because of misconduct, law enforcement records show.

One was a sheriff who raped a minor, the Idaho Statesman reported based on records provided by Idaho Peace Officer Standards and Training. Another was an officer who stole money from clients of his business.

The total number of Idaho decertifications in 2020 was up from 2019, when 39 officers were stripped of their credentials, according to a database on police misconduct compiled by the Statesman.

The database shows that 486 Idaho police officers have been decertified since 2002. When an officer is decertified by the POST council, the officer is ineligible for certification for at least 10 years, according to the agency’s rules.

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“While we can’t definitively account for the increase, I do not believe it is a result of an increase in officer misconduct,” said POST Division Administrator Brad Johnson.

Rather, Johnson said, increased hours and investigative staff may be the reason for the rise in cases.

Police officers can lose their certification based on various allegations of misconduct, like drinking alcohol on duty, lying in the course of an investigation or being convicted of a crime.

Some of the most notable decertifications in 2020 were a former sheriff who was found guilty and sentenced to at least 14 years in prison on counts of lewd conduct with a child under 16, rape and child sexual abuse, the Statesman reported. Another was a former police officer who pled guilty to stealing nearly $50,000 from clients of his property management company.

POST had decertified two officers in 2021 as of March.