The Chicago Police Department is considering disciplinary actions against a huge number of its officers for sneaking a peek at the arrest reports of two fellow cops.
According to the Chicago Sun-Times, over 1,000 within the department have accessed the records, which detail allegations that two officers sexually assaulted a 22-year-old woman in Rogers Park.
Those officers looked at the records "without reason or authorization to do so," according to an Internal Affairs memo scanned by the Second City Cop blog. "Access to information is restricted to official police business," the memo states. "Access of information for personal or other reasons is prohibited."
NBC Chicago speculates that officers may have pulled up the document to learn some of its lurid details. Apparently, the two officers (on duty at the time) found the woman crying and drunk after a fight with a man. The police report states that one officer had sex with the woman in the squad car; the three then returned to her home, where they played strip poker. When an officer ended up in her bed, the woman felt intimidated, and as though she could no longer deny their advances. She ran out of her apartment screaming for help, allegations say.
The officers who viewed the documents will receive a mild form of internal punishment known as a SPAR, according to CBS. But some object to the across-the-board punishment:
The Chicago Fraternal Order of Police calls the move to discipline the officers "almost comical."
"To begin with, they have the internal capacity to block sensitive reports, and they didn't do it," said FOP spokesman Pat Camden.
Camden adds that the department could tell specifically who did access and print out the salacious reports, so it shouldn't mete out widespread discipline.
He says mass-punishment of officers is "not the way to handle an investigation,"
"On this magnitude, this is a first," Camden said to the Sun-Times.
The officers named in the allegation have been stripped of their police powers while the incident is being investigated.
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