"Absolute truth is a very rare and dangerous commodity..." - Hunter S. Thompson (pbuh), 1973

Thursday, March 17, 2011

He Didn't REALLY Do Anything Wrong...Really

I know I shouldn't be surprised, but it rather galls me when public officials, especially those in law enforcement, hold everyone else to a higher standard than they apparently hold themselves.

Once again, credit goes to WLEX for reporting on this.

Lexington Police Officer Faces Charge

The Lexington Police Department has leveled charges against one of its own.

The department and the Lexington Fayette-Urban County Council are looking into allegations that Sgt. Earl Rayford asked his officers to give money found on a fugitive to his stepdaughter.

LEX 18 obtained a copy of the charges before they were made public. They were presented to the council during a disciplinary hearing Tuesday night.

The charges stem from an incident in August of 2010. A statement of formal charges alleges Rayford was off duty and asked dispatch to send officers to arrest Delvagio Lax, a wanted fugitive. Rayford's attorney, William Jacobs, said Lax was dating Rayford's stepdaughter at the time.

"Police officers went to where he was located. They did find him there. He was armed. He had drugs on him, and had some money on him," he said during the hearing.

About $455, according to the statement of charges.

"Sgt. Rayford called these officers and had that money returned to a family member," Lexington Fayette County Urban Government Keith Horn said.

Rayford's attorney said the sergeant knew the money belonged to his stepdaughter and that she had taken almost that exact amount out of an ATM earlier in the morning.

According to the statement of charges, Rayford's wife met officers and said she'd take the money for her daughter, Rayford, "never revealed the family relationship surrounding this incident," and charges against Lax were reduced from trafficking to possession of a controlled substance because the money was returned.

Jacobs told council members that Rayford was honest about the family relationship, that he never ordered officers to do anything and that there was never and original trafficking charge in the first place.

"He did what a police officer was supposed to do. Said the right thing. Did the right thing. As to this, I'm still at - what he did wrong? He didn't do anything wrong," Jacobs said.

According to the statement of charges, signed by Lexington Police Department chief Ronnie J. Bastin, Rayford's conduct, "does not reflect favorably upon the division of police," and "brings disrepute to the division."

The council decided to postpone the hearing. It will hear the case against Rayford on April 26 at 5 p.m.
In the meantime, Rayford remains on the job.

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