Friday, November 30, 2007

Atlanta Cops: Turning a Blind Eye to Sexual Abuse

From this morning's AJC, we learn that the Atlanta police department has known for seven years that one of its officers was making child pornography, yet did nothing to stop the sexual abuse of underage girls:

Atlanta police were told seven years ago that the husband of a sergeant on the force was paying young girls for sex — and saw photographs of the encounters — but the tip resulted in no investigation or charges, according to federal authorities.

Terrill Marion Crane was arrested Thursday on federal charges of producing child pornography and is scheduled to make his first appearance in court Friday on charges he paid the young girls as much as $100 and photographed their sex acts.

...A photo shop clerk, bothered by the pictures brought to him for processing, called police in 2000. He gave APD copies of pictures brought to the shop through 2002, according to federal authorities.

As it turns out, Crane's wife, also a police officer, knew of the abuse and decided to cover for him by destroying sexually explicit photographs and their negatives. While she has not been charged with a crime, she has been suspended without pay. U.S. Attorney David Nahmias is now searching for the victims, and has identified four. Nahmias is trying to assure victims that they will now be cared for, after so long being ignored:

"None of the girls are under investigation," Nahmias said. "There are girls out there who were victims. It's hard for these girls to come forward."

If they do come forward, Nahmias said, they would be treated "with the dignity and protection they deserve."

What does it mean when the very people charged with our protection turn a blind eye to crimes committed by one of their own? Is the refusal to act a symptom of a sense entitlement? Of cowardice?

(Via Of Council)


Casmall said...

Atlanta PD, not such a good record. Didn't thet shoot an old lady this summer?

La Pobre Habladora said...

Yeah, that is a horrific story as well. The narcotics officers involved entered the house with a "no-knock" warrant after receiving a tip that drugs were being dealt from that home, and then they apparently offered to bribe an informant in an attempted cover-up. You can read the AP story .

La Pobre Habladora said...

Um... that would be at the Albuquerque Tribune.