Spokane Police Officer Placed On Administrative Leave - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Spokane Police Officer Placed On Administrative Leave

Ofc. Barry O'Connell Ofc. Barry O'Connell

KHQ.COM - Spokane Police Ofc. Barry O'Connell is on administrative leave pending the outcome of a internal affairs investigation.  

The investigation is not criminal and we don't know if it's related to the incident in 2012 in which his daughter shot herself with his police gun.

An investigation at that time found he did not properly secure his duty weapon.

PREVIOUS STORY:

SPOKANE, Wash. -- The daughter of a Spokane Police Officer came home Thursday night from the hospital after she accidentally shot herself in the leg with her father's police-issued gun on Eastern Sunday.  Officer Barry O'Connell is still under criminal investigation by the Spokane County Sheriff's for the incident.
 
He could also face potentially further punishment by the Police Department since policy requires service weapons to be secure. They will also consider O'Connell's lengthy disciplinary record which Spokane Interim Police Chief Scott Stephens described as "more involved than other officers."
 
The first complaint was lodged in 1994 and the last one was lodged in 2010. The most serious incidents - for which O'Connell had two lengthy suspensions - happened with the last three years. Most recently, in 2010, he was suspended for two weeks for Conduct Unbecoming of an Officer as well as Insubordination. In 2009, O'Connell was suspended for a week after someone within the department accused him of Sexual Harassment and Improper Conduct. Both of the suspensions were unpaid.
 
He's also received counseling and verbal and written reprimands for several other incidents.

"I think that shows a pattern of being involved in misconduct but the misconduct is not of a patterned nature if that makes sense," Stephens said. "If anything there's a pattern of poor judgement?"
The list does not provide details about the incidents themselves or what led to the investigations. At the department, Stephens said the discipline dolled out is progressive, which is why O'Connell was suspended for two weeks after the most recent internal affairs investigation. Keep in mind, former Chief Anne Kirkpatrick was the person responsible for deciding upon O'Connell's discipline regarding these incidents.
 
However, when does a list of disciplinary actions become too much?

"That's a great question and one we ask ourselves all the time: how much is too much?" Stephens continued. "I want to make sure that when I'm making my decisions, they're firmly based on labor laws, and that I can justify precisely what I'm doing and that the sentence fits the offense - that the discipline meets the misconduct."
At this point, Chief Stephens said he is waiting until the Sheriff's Office investigation is complete before he begins the internal affairs investigation.
 
Stephens added, "I will manage this appropriately. I will do what's right."

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Washington's new DUI-E law takes effect Sunday

    Washington's new DUI-E law takes effect Sunday

    Tuesday, July 18 2017 10:02 PM EDT2017-07-19 02:02:25 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. - "He was my youngest, he was my baby bear," Tina Myer said about her son that was killed by a distracted driver. It was a distracted driver that killed Tina Myer's son Cody, hitting the 23-year-old as he was working as a flagger at a construction site in December 2015. He suffered severe injuries, and died several months later. Now Myer is joining Governor Inslee, praising a new DUI-E law.

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - "He was my youngest, he was my baby bear," Tina Myer said about her son that was killed by a distracted driver. It was a distracted driver that killed Tina Myer's son Cody, hitting the 23-year-old as he was working as a flagger at a construction site in December 2015. He suffered severe injuries, and died several months later. Now Myer is joining Governor Inslee, praising a new DUI-E law.

    >>
  • Court docs: 3 month old baby with severe brain trauma taken to ICU

    Court docs: 3 month old baby with severe brain trauma taken to ICU

    Wednesday, July 19 2017 8:24 PM EDT2017-07-20 00:24:22 GMT
    Court docs: 3 month old baby with severe brain trauma taken to ICUCourt docs: 3 month old baby with severe brain trauma taken to ICU

    SPOKANE, Wash. - Spokane Police Officers were called to Sacred Heart Children's Hospital Friday after receiving word that a three month old baby had arrived at the Intensive Care Unit with severe brain trauma. Court documents say the parents took the baby to the Holy Family Hospital, where the injuries were deemed severe. The baby was then taken by ambulance to Sacred Heart. According to the documents, a CPS caseworker says one 

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - Spokane Police Officers were called to Sacred Heart Children's Hospital Friday after receiving word that a three month old baby had arrived at the Intensive Care Unit with severe brain trauma. Court documents say the parents took the baby to the Holy Family Hospital, where the injuries were deemed severe. The baby was then taken by ambulance to Sacred Heart. According to the documents, a CPS caseworker says one 

    >>
  • Man with previous ties to Coeur d'Alene and Spokane wanted by the FBI on meth trafficking charges

    Man with previous ties to Coeur d'Alene and Spokane wanted by the FBI on meth trafficking charges

    Wednesday, July 19 2017 5:57 PM EDT2017-07-19 21:57:16 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. - The FBI is looking for a convicted felon they believe is involved in trafficking methamphetamine in Montana.  33-year-old Chase Storlie initially had a federal arrest warrant issued for him in Montana on June 9 for failure to appear at his arraignment in Helena. Storlie was previously charged on April 26, 2017, with conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine, possession with intent to distribute meth.

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - The FBI is looking for a convicted felon they believe is involved in trafficking methamphetamine in Montana.  33-year-old Chase Storlie initially had a federal arrest warrant issued for him in Montana on June 9 for failure to appear at his arraignment in Helena. Storlie was previously charged on April 26, 2017, with conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine, possession with intent to distribute meth.

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Top Stories from KHQHomeMore>>

  • One woman dead after mobile home fire in Elk

    One woman dead after mobile home fire in Elk

    Thursday, July 20 2017 9:44 AM EDT2017-07-20 13:44:42 GMT

    ELK, Wash. - One woman is dead after an early morning mobile home fire in Elk, Washington.  Firefighters responded to the fire in the heavily wooded area to find the home engulfed in flames. Two people were inside the home when the flames broke out. Crews say they were alerted by smoke detectors,

    >>

    ELK, Wash. - One woman is dead after an early morning mobile home fire in Elk, Washington.  Firefighters responded to the fire in the heavily wooded area to find the home engulfed in flames. Two people were inside the home when the flames broke out. Crews say they were alerted by smoke detectors,

    >>
  • WATCH: Bear rides motorcycle in Russia

    WATCH: Bear rides motorcycle in Russia

    Thursday, July 20 2017 9:37 AM EDT2017-07-20 13:37:26 GMT

    RUSSIA - Drivers in northern Russia got quite a show when two bikers decided to take their motorcycle for a ride. this was no ordinary cruise as the duo had a live bear riding with them in their sidecar.  the very well-trained bear named Tim sat calmly in his seat while even waving at cars and folks passing by. the bikers and their 250-pound bear, are actually part of a traveling circus run by the local bike club that regularly makes appearances. 

    >>

    RUSSIA - Drivers in northern Russia got quite a show when two bikers decided to take their motorcycle for a ride. this was no ordinary cruise as the duo had a live bear riding with them in their sidecar.  the very well-trained bear named Tim sat calmly in his seat while even waving at cars and folks passing by. the bikers and their 250-pound bear, are actually part of a traveling circus run by the local bike club that regularly makes appearances. 

    >>
  • OJ Simpson draws world attention in plea for freedom

    OJ Simpson draws world attention in plea for freedom

    Thursday, July 20 2017 8:39 AM EDT2017-07-20 12:39:32 GMT

    LOVELOCK, Nev. - Former football star and convicted felon O.J. Simpson will command the world's attention once again Thursday when he pleads for his freedom on live TV. Simpson received a 33-year sentence in 2008 for an armed robbery involving two sports memorabilia dealers in a Las Vegas hotel room. 

    >>

    LOVELOCK, Nev. - Former football star and convicted felon O.J. Simpson will command the world's attention once again Thursday when he pleads for his freedom on live TV. Simpson received a 33-year sentence in 2008 for an armed robbery involving two sports memorabilia dealers in a Las Vegas hotel room. 

    >>