KANSAS CITY, KS (KCTV) — Jay-Z’s philanthropic group, Team Roc, has filed a lawsuit against the Kansas City, Kansas, Police Department to obtain complaints of alleged misconduct against officers.
The group is battling for records from the department. In the suit, Team Roc claims: “The KCKPD is entrusted by the public to help maintain peace in the community. Yet, for years, it appears that officers have abused their power and engaged in wrongdoing.”
The filing argues, “The KCKPD has, however, refused to produce documents relating to any internal investigations into wrongdoing by specific members of the KCKPD, preventing the public from evaluating whether the KCKPD has adequately supervised its officers, investigated any complaints, and addressed the allegations of misconduct against members of its force.”
The lawsuit cites several examples of alleged misconduct: “It is an open secret that the KCKPD has a history of misconduct.” It specifically names former police chief Terry Ziegler and his former partner Roger Golubski as perpetrators of alleged misconduct, as well as more recent complaints regarding the “blue code of silence.”
The suit claims no one within the department put an end to corrupt practices or even brought them to light.
The suit says the city has refused to produce documents in response to three requests.
KCTV5 has contacted the KCK Police Department for a response to the lawsuit. The county responded with this statement:
“The Unified Government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City, KS has received notice that Roc Nation has filed a petition for a writ of mandamus in the Wyandotte County District Court today regarding an earlier open records request. The Unified Government has previously produced hundreds of the requested records per the Kansas Open Records Act (KORA) with some exceptions. KORA does not require the disclosure of personnel records and criminal investigation records, for example, without specific circumstances. In response, Roc Nation has filed a 28-page petition stating there is a special interest in disclosing all records so the public can seek justice. Once the petition has been thoroughly reviewed, the Unified Government will follow-up by filing a response.”
KCTV5 News did receive the following statement on behalf of Lamonte McIntyre and Rose McIntyre, which says:
“We are pleased that Jay-Z and Team Roc are delving into the long and troubling history of the Kansas City, Kansas Police Department. Their lawsuit seeking public records and information is in the public’s interest and should help bring much-needed transparency and accountability.”
Cheryl Pilate and Lindsay Runnels
Morgan Pilate LLC