COPS flush a Fetus down the toilet

mesa-pd-patch(FOX 10)   MESA – Mesa Police are investigating two separate incidents that they say are very damaging and embarrassing for the department.

In a press conference Wednesday night, Mesa Police Chief George Gascon described five officers undergoing internal investigations for misconduct.

Dead baby flushed

The first incident involves an officer who flushed a stillborn fetus down a toilet after responding to a Mesa hotel where a woman had just had a miscarriage. The fetus was 12-weeks along.

That incident occurred June 1 at a Motel 6 on W Hampton, and the persons involved are 24-year-old Raeann Bell and 48-year-old Allen Coleman.

Officers responding were told at the time not to touch the fetus because it was part of an ongoing investigation, but some of them failed to follow that order.

The officers involved are Kristen Johnson, hired in August 2003, Nicholas Webster, hired in April 2004, Robert Buquo, hired in July 2002, Lead Officer Glenn Pearson, hired in Jan. 2003, and Lt. Lynn Young, hired in 1986.

Aggressive handling

In the second incident, a Mesa police officer roughed up a suspect by pushing his face into the back of a squad car and holding his face against the trunk. Minutes later, the officer forced the man’s face into a chain link fence.

The suspect is identified as 21-year-old Sean Okoli.

The officer involved is Nicholas Webster, who was also involved in the other incident. The incident, which took place May 16, 2009 at the Mesa Police Holding Facility on N Robson, was caught on surveillance video.

Chief: “Continuing commitment to transparency”

“Despite our best efforts, allegations of improper behavior by our personnel, occasionally arise. It is important to understand that such alleged behavior is a drastic departure from the norm. Most importantly, the ongoing work of the men and women of the Mesa Police Department should not be overshadowed by the unnacceptable conduct of a few,” said Police Chief George Gascon.

“The Mesa PD will fully and completely investigate this incident in our continuing commitment to transparency. When those investigations are complete I will come back to you with those results.”

The five officers involved in the cases have been taken off the streets and placed on some sort of administrative reassignment. There is also an ongoing criminal investigation.

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