I-Team: Highway Robbery

Number 25715
Subject Crime
Source WCPO-TV (Cincinnati)
State Ohio
Year 2012
Publication Date 07/09/2012; 07/10/2012; 09/27/2012
Summary WCPO's investigative unit exposed widespread theft of traffic fines by court clerks in a local community notorious as a speed trap -- Arlington Heights, Ohio. Bigger than the thefts by a pair of court clerks was the government cover up that persisted for at least a decade. We obtained documents showing two successive police chiefs had warned the mayor and fiscal officer of Arlington Heights that a substantial amount of cash was missing as far back as 2002. Rather than heeding those warnings, the elected leaders of Arlington Heights marginalized both police chiefs, who eventually resigned. Our ongoing investigation has directly resulted in: · Multiple felony indictments against two government employees for theft in office. · Passage and subsequent repeal of an illegal ban on television cameras in public council meetings. · The complete and permanent shut-down of the speed trap on I-75 through Arlington Heights, Ohio. · A call from the county prosecutor for the village to be dissolved and annexed into a neighboring city. · Committee passage of Ohio House Bill 523, eliminating mayors' courts in communities with fewer than 1,000 residents. · The adoption of a new public records policy for the Village of Arlington Heights, conforming with Ohio public records and open meetings laws. Chief Investigative Reporter Brendan Keefe successfully fought against a wall of resistance to obtain public documents and gain access to illegally-closed council meetings.
Category Contest Entry
Pages
Keywords Theft; traffic fines; police chiefs; mayor; fiscal officer;
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