(KMOV.com) - The third segment of our documentary confronts the greedy politicians who enable, and in many cases – push, the revenue-driven approach to policing and the courts.
In Edmundson, we challenged Mayor John Gwaltney, who put a memo in the envelopes that contained the paychecks of each officer on the force. In that memo the mayor noted that he'd noticed a "marked downturn in traffic and other tickets," He reminded the officers that "the tickets you write do add to the revenue on which the P.D. is established and will directly affect pay adjustments at budget time."
“That's kind of a veiled threat, isn't it?” News 4 asked Gwaltney.
“Well, I was trying to motivate them to do their job and do it right,” he responded.
“To write more tickets?” News 4 asked.
“Tickets are the only way that I can quantify their work,” the Gwaltney insisted.
We also examined how part of the response to problems highlighted in our investigation and through other sources, has left many problems unresolved. Our reports on the Ferguson Commission exposed many shortcomings, including a blatant lack of transparency. In our documentary, we examined the critical parts of revenue-driven policing and courts that are not addressed.
In the final part of this segment, I provide a commentary with some proposed solutions that seem likely to address much of the injustice that remains. Many of these ideas have been shared by others, but I thought it was important to hit them again in a way that shows we still have a long way to go before we have adequately addressed the problems examined in The Injustice System.