Wichita Police Department

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The Wichita Police Department is conducting an internal investigation that possibly involves misconduct by department members.

According to Police Chief Gordon Ramsay, the case is the result of a criminal investigation being conducted by another law enforcement agency.

"Two police officers have been placed on administrative review pending the outcome of the criminal and internal investigation," he said during a press briefing Tuesday.

Ramsay said he plans to be transparent and keep the media and community informed as the investigation progresses.

The Wichita Police Department and the Sedgwick County Sheriff's office plan to work together to investigate charges of officer-involved criminal conduct. Wichita Police Chief Gordon Ramsay says the agencies will investigate each other when members of either department are accused of a crime. So, if a Wichita police officer allegedly commits a crime, the sheriff's office will conduct the investigation and vice versa.

In the past, a criminal complaint would have been assigned to each agency's own investigation department.

Tex Texin, flickr Creative Commons

Updated Feb. 8, 2:30 p.m.: The Wichita Police Department has identified the injured officer as 25-year WPD veteran Brian Arterburn. Officials say Arterburn's condition has improved since Tuesday when he had emergency surgery at Via Christi St. Francis. He sustained injuries to his chest, abdomen and brain.  

In a news release, the WPD thanked the community for its continued support. 

SDOT Photos / flickr Creative Commons

The Wichita Police Department is asking for the public’s help to monitor handicap accessible parking spots throughout the city.

The department is recruiting 40 volunteers—10 for each bureau—for its Accessible Parking Program. Volunteers will let police know when they see someone park illegally in spots reserved for people with disabilities, or in areas that block access zones. A sergeant could issue a ticket, which carries a fine of up to $100.

WPD Lt. James Espinoza said Tuesday that volunteers are performing an important civic duty.

Ark Valley Fire Buff / Flickr

The Wichita City Council approved plans Tuesday to study the police department’s needs as it prepares to build a new station.

The Wichita Police Department is planning to build a new facility to replace its aging Patrol East substation near Kellogg and Edgemoor. It was built in 1989 for about 40 people—now, 140 people work there, Chief Gordon Ramsay told council members.

The city’s Capital Improvement Program includes more than $2 million for a new facility. $125,000 of that will be used to first study how to design a modern police station.

Nadya Faulx / KMUW

A partnership between the ride-sharing service Uber and the Wichita Police Department is offering first-time Uber users a free ride or discount of up to $20 through New Year's Eve.  The promotion began on Tuesday, Dec. 27, with the goal of reducing the number of holiday DUIs.

PATRICK T. FALLON BLOOMBERG VIA GETTY IMAGES

After Saturday, Dec. 31, all of the funding for the Wichita Police Department's Air Section will be reallocated to pay for body-worn cameras.

This past July, every patrol officer in the WPD was reportedly equipped with a body-worn camera, a milestone that came nearly seven months after the projected deadline. The implementation process was delayed by the late release of funds for a $250,000 matching grant from the U.S. Department of Justice.

Abigail Beckman / KMUW

The Union Rescue Mission and the Wichita Police Department on Tuesday delivered holiday meals to local families in need. It's part of a 13-year partnership between the department and the shelter.

Nearly 100 cardboard boxes lined the cafeteria tables Tuesday morning at Wichita's Union Rescue Mission, an emergency shelter and job training center for men. Inside each box was a frozen turkey, bread, pie, canned goods and garnishes, all to be delivered to local families. 

This year, Officer Brent Johnson with the WPD organized the delivery process.

Tony Webster / flickr Creative Commons

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt has ordered a review of the state's Amber Alert system, after cell phone alerts failed following a kidnapping in Wichita Monday.

Schmidt has asked for a complete review of the program and a report no later than January 31, 2017.  

Deborah Shaar / KMUW

On Tuesday, leaders from south-central Kansas’ law enforcement agencies gathered in Wichita to participate in a seminar that focused on hiring practices to help increase diversity.

The U.S. Justice Department sponsored the seminar, calling it a “Diversity Dialogue.”

The agency’s research found that people in underrepresented communities often have a lack of trust in law enforcement and don’t know about police career opportunities.

Those factors, and others, become barriers to police recruiting and hiring efforts.

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