WA.) – King County Sheriff
Mitzi Johanknecht has announced that, in the interest of transparency
and maintaining public trust in law enforcement, she
releasing details about a recent disciplinary matter involving a King
Washington State, personnel records of public employees that contain
information regarding instances of misconduct are public records and
available to the public.
has decided that KCSO Detective Janette Luitgaarden will serve a 4
day, 40 hour suspension without pay for “Conduct Unbecoming”
for an off-duty incident that occurred on November 4, 2017.
reached her decision after the conclusion of an internal investigation and a
hearing (called a Loudermill hearing) where Detective Luitgaarden was
able to present “additional mitigating information to the
Sheriff,” according to a statement released by the KCSO.
Uber drive incident
internal probe concluded that Detective Luitgaarden “punched,
kicked, scratched and slapped an Uber driver during a ride to her
home around 7pm.
A WSP Trooper, who responded to the incident, noted Luitgaarden
appeared “significantly intoxicated.”
notes the Uber driver did not wish to pursue charges against
Detective Luitgaarden and the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s
Office also declined to file charges in the case. Despite this,
Sheriff Johanknecht determined Luitgaarden’s actions that night
“were embarrassing to the Sheriff’s Office and our
employees should never behave in a way that diminishes public trust
and respect for law enforcement” said Sheriff Johanknecht.
“While I recognize that law enforcement is a stressful
profession and our employees will, from time to time, struggle with
personal difficulties, I expect our law enforcement and professional
staff members to act lawfully and be good role models.”
following documents from this incident and investigation have been
uploaded to OneDrive at:
Video (State Patrol)
is entitled to challenge the Sheriff’s decision through a
grievance process, with the assistance of her union.