Monday, December 7, 2009

Vermillion Police: False Reports Drain Resources

A couple of interesting admissions by the police chief. Comments will be interspersed.

Police see rise in false reports. Will now start to pursue charges.

Police in Vermillion say they're wasting their time and resources investigating false reports that never wind up in court. Vermillion Police Chief Art Mabry says the department has seen a string of false reports lately and its taxing the department's resources.

Could it be, that because we see so many false accusations that result in no punishment, that this is the reason you have seen a string of fasle reports lately?

On Tuesday Mabry said an 18 year old was charged with making a false report to police after she said her ex-boyfriend was sending threatening text messages and was in Vermillion threatening to kill her.

A police investigation discovered the ex-boyfriend was in Nebraska and never sent any messages to the woman. The streets of Vermillion are typically quiet, so when officers hear about serious crimes they do everything they can to investigate those cases.

"If it's a true crime the evidence will point to that, if it's a false report we will figure it out," Vermillion Police Chief Art Mabry said. And recently the Vermillion Police Department has been receiving more false reports.

Based on this statement, it appears that the police are usually able to tell when a report is false. And yet, we always hear that the police don't do enough of an in depth investigation.

"It's typically people trying to get back at a spouse, a former relationship," Mabry said. Mabry says they've had rape cases reported that turned out to be nothing more than a dispute between a boyfriend and girlfriend.

"We're seeing where sexual assaults are reported to us and we find out that actually a boyfriend found out that a girlfriend was out with someone else, and rather than just dealing with it or talking about it the allegation all of a sudden becomes I was raped. Obviously we take those very seriously," Mabry said.

So, as we see so frequently on this site, to cover up infidelity, claim to be raped. Glad to see people taking responsibility for thier actions, by ruining another persons life.

Mabry says such serious allegations take a lot of resources from his department and take away from other legitimate cases that may turn out to be even more serious.

"I don't think people understand or realize the consequences of what happens here," Mabry said.

Which is why if the Vermillion Police Department finds anyone else making false reports, they say that person should be prepared to face the consequences.

"If we catch you, you're going to be charged. We haven't always charged this in the past but now that we're seeing such an increase in it you're going to start paying for your actions," Mabry said.

So, you had people breaking the law, that you allowed to walk away with no consequences. And now that you are seeing a rise in the number of false reports, you are now going to start charging people. Does it ever occur to law enforcement, that the reason you have seen such a rise in false reports is because you weren't imposing any consequences on those making the false reports?

Mabry says he doesn't want this warning to deter people from reporting actual crimes. But, if you know you're lying to authorities, he says, you will be charged.

Making a false report to police is a class one misdemeanor and carries a maximum penalty of one year in jail and two thousand dollar fine.

And what would be the penalty for the individual falsely accused of rape or sexual assault? I think it would be higher than that. Making a false report a felony, and actually pursuing charges against false accusers, would go a long way to lowering the amount of false accusations levied.