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Glenpool city leaders refer questions about discarded evidence to PR firm

Posted at 10:38 PM, Jun 13, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-13 23:41:43-04

    GLENPOOL, Okla. -- Shocking new developments in a story 2 Works for You broke concerning discarded police evidence found in a dumpster behind the Glenpool Police Department.

    Criminal evidence, including gruesome pictures, had been thrown away.

    2 Works for You investigator Travis Guillory dug deeper Wednesday into how this happened.

    For the second day in a row, 2 Works for You was denied interviews with Police heads, and now city leaders.   

Travis: "Why couldn't we speak to the chief himself about this situation?"
Mandy Vavrinak, of the city's PR firm: "Because I'm the first point of contact for these kinds of things."

2 Works for You tried to get answers from the police chief and even the mayor and city manager, but the company line was that we could get answers from the PR firm hired by the City of Glenpool.

"The internal inquiry that is now underway at the police department is to decide how those things can be prevented from ever happening again," Vavrinak said.

After 2 Works for You started investigating Tuesday and alerted the Tulsa County District Attorney, our cameras captured Glenpool Police officers taking the evidence out of the dumpster and bringing it back inside. These were some of the same employees who are in charge of the evidence room - collecting the evidence for what they say is an internal investigation. 

The spokesperson says, as far as they can tell, it was an accident.

The question is how does all of that - pictures of deceased, bloodied bodies - people's loved ones, drug paraphernalia, full folders of full-page confidential police records - go from being safe inside the police station to being tossed out back in the dumpster?

"That is part of the internal inquiry that we are now undergoing to make sure that does not happen again,"  Vavrinak said.

Most of the evidence was from 2003 to 2005. And Vavrinak says no current case files were tossed out. 
The department has requested an outside investigation from the Tulsa DA's office.

"If they have recommendations as a result of their evaluation, we will then implement those as well," Vavrinak said.

DA Steve Kunzweiler tells 2 Works for You - it's appropriate that an appointed investigator from his office looks into this. 

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