Ken Rodriguez of the Express-News talks about it.
With lights from patrol cars and EMS units flashing, Police Chief Bill McManus arrived with his 6-year-old son and slipped under the crime scene tape. No one suggests the chief's son contaminated evidence, but officers expressed serious concern about the legal ramifications.
“How are we supposed to explain that at trial?” one officer asked.
Added a second officer: “If I were a savvy defense attorney I would certainly bring it up. ‘Chief, what were you doing with your son at the crime scene? Why were you allowing him to go into the inner perimeter?'”
The answer to the first question: McManus says he was off-duty with his son when paged about a fatality in an officer-involved chase. With his wife unavailable, McManus took his son to the scene.
The answer to the second: The chief says it was too hot to leave his son in the car, and too hot to leave him standing outside the tape.
I've always been a bit suspicious about McManus.
He was charged with reverse racial discrimination in Ohio (he lost that suit). He wants to tax our drinks. He wants unopened beer cans to count as opened ones.
McManus wants a "broken" six-pack in a driver's possession to be considered an open container. He said he'd like a state law that would allow officers to cite a driver if any of the six containers in a six-pack were not present.And he proposes strange policies that actually seem to weaken an officer's ability to respond.
Officers should refrain from shooting at moving vehicles unless a person in the vehicle is immediately threatening the officer or another person with deadly force by means other than the vehicle itself.Now, with this incident, I think I might be on to something when I question his judgment. Did he really need to be that close to the scene without waiting for someone to pick up his son first, especially since he said he was at the scene for only twenty minutes? What is anyone doing exposing a six-year-old kid to dead bodies and crime, especially a police chief?