Tuesday, August 01, 2000

Police specialists suspended

2 worked sexual assault case

By Marie McCain
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        Two Cincinnati police specialists have been relieved of their police powers pending a criminal review into their handling of a sexual assault investigation, officials announced Monday.

        The pair, Royce Winters and Lesa Chatman, are members of the Personal Crimes Unit, a division of the police department that investigates crimes against children and any sex-related offenses.

        Both Mr. Winters and Ms. Chatman were suspended with pay Friday, said Internal Investigations Capt. Gregory Snider.

        They have been reassigned to different divisions of the department that will keep them from dealing with the public, he said.

        Ms. Chatman will work in the police communications section, while Mr. Winters has been reassigned to the police supply room.

        The two specialists had been investigating a sexual assault case that took place about 10 days ago, Capt. Snider said. But the pair were removed from the case after a superior officer received “information from someone outside the division” that there was something wrong with the handling of the case.

        Capt. Snider declined to be more specific.

        Mr. Winters has been a member of the force since 1980. Ms. Chatman joined the department in 1987.

        Fraternal Order of Police President Keith Fangman said Monday that he was aware of the officers' reassignment and loss of their police powers. But he said he did not know more than that.

        The sexual assault case the two specialists had been investigating involved a “male child, who is not hospitalized and is in the custody of his mother,” Capt. Snider said. Police have a suspect in the case, although no charges have been filed.


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