Thompson Quits SPD Prior To Interview - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Thompson Quits SPD Prior To Interview

SPOKESMAN.COM - Convicted Spokane Police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. has announced he is resigning from the Spokane Police Department one day before a scheduled interview for an internal investigation.

Thompson, 64, was convicted Nov. 2 of using excessive force and lying to investigators following the beating and later death of 36-year-old Otto Zehm.

In his letter to the city, Thompson simply stated: "It has been my honor and privilege to serve as a Spokane police officer for this city. I hereby submit my resignation effective Thursday, Nov. 17, 2011."

City spokeswoman Marlene Feist said Thompson had been scheduled to submit to what's known as a Loudermill interview on Friday. Under that interview, officers are bound to answer all questions posed to them.

Those interviews typically come after the completion of criminal investigations because officers cannot be prosecuted for information they reveal in Loudermill interviews.

Thompson was released on a previous $50,000 signature bond _ which did not require that he post any money _ by U.S. District Judge Fred Van Sickle on Nov. 7. Following that release, officers escorted Thompson through the Public Safety Building while fellow officers greeted him.

"We would like the community to understand that Karl retrieved personal items from the building while being escorted by other police officers," department spokeswoman Officer Jennifer DeRuwe. "Karl took a few moments to say good bye to his co-workers, as well as thank them for their support."

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