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5 Boulder officers disciplined after internal audit discovers misconduct

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Posted at 8:53 PM, Dec 06, 2022

DENVER — Five officers with the Boulder Police Department were disciplined following the results of an internal audit that uncovered misconduct, the department announced in a news release Tuesday.

The five officers, who work in the department’s investigations unit, were identified as Commander Thomas Trujillo, Commander Barry Hartkopp, Sergeant David Spraggs, Sergeant Brannon Winn, and Officer Kwame Williams.

The five were found to be in violation of department policy after the conclusion of the review process that “resulted in a determination of officer misconduct,” the release said.

The department said following a review of the unit’s case management system, “department officials became aware of cases assigned to a particular detective that had not been investigated or investigated fully between 2019 and the present.”

“I regret that this happened and consider it a serious situation,” Boulder Police Chief Maris Herold said in the release. “We had an employee who apparently became overwhelmed. He has since been reassigned from the Investigations Unit.”

Chief Herold requested the review in July of this year when the discrepancies were found. She then “immediately brought it to the attention of the Professional Standards Unit and the Independent Police Monitor, with allegations of several different rule/policy violations.”

On Nov. 1, Chief Herold implemented the following discipline:

  • Commander Thomas Trujillo received an involuntary transfer to another division and a three-day suspension without pay; this officer was also placed on a Performance Improvement Plan.
  • Commander Barry Hartkopp was given a one-year letter of reprimand and is receiving additional training.
  • Sergeant David Spraggs retired by resignation. The chief accepted the resignation and ordered that the termination be held “in abeyance.”
  • Sergeant Brannon Winn was suspended for one day without pay.
  • Officer Kwame Williams was suspended for five days without pay.

Additionally, the department has taken the following steps to address the situation, the release read:

  • A preliminary and ongoing analysis was conducted of the detective’s caseload.
  • The department has rewritten its investigations’ case management policy to provide for workload standards, including limiting the number of cases any one detective may handle, ensuring a regular review of open cases by supervisors, and imposing time limits for investigations.
  • The department has launched its new data portal for case management, allowing supervisors and managers real time access to case status and assignments.

The Boulder County District Attorney’s Office is conducting an independent audit of the cases.