Recently, the Riley County Police Department stopped giving out the names of victims of crimes during their daily reports.
RCPD Director, Dennis Butler noticed this was standard practice for the department when he took over, and decided it needed to change.
Butler observed that several people in the community have had issues with the fact that RCPD released the names of victims to the public, and he decided to act on it.
Butler says they had received numerous requests from victims urging them to change the policy after being ridiculed or becoming gossip in communities. He says by law, RCPD must release the first page of crime reports to anyone who submits an official inquiry about a specific crime. This more often than not includes victims’ names. But he says RCPD had been releasing more information than was actually required by law.
Butler says a key factor in changing the approach to the release of information was due in part to residents in northern Riley County feeling under-served. He says that area in particular has felt discouraged in the past to come forward with crimes. He and the department are hoping this policy will change that.
Butler was a guest on KMAN’s In Focus program on June 28. It will re-air as part of a Best of In Focus program at 9 a.m. July 5 on News Radio KMAN.