Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Four MPD Officers Charged In Strip Search Felony Violations

(L-R) Officers Jeffrey Dollhopf, Jacob Knight, Brian Kozelek and Michael Vagnini

A six month strip search John Doe investigation involving 4 Milwaukee Police Officers ends with multiple state charges.

By H. Nelson Goodson
October 9, 2012

Milwaukee, WI - On Tuesday, four Milwaukee Police Officers were charged in Milwaukee County with multiple criminal charges stemming from conducting illegal strip searches on the field of nine detained citizens (victims). The officers charged abused their police powers while engaged in unauthorized and illegal activity involving strip searches, the criminal complaint states.
The charges included Second Degree Sexual Assault, Third Degree Sexual Assault, Fourth Degree Sexual Assault, Illegal Body Cavity Search, Illegal Strip Search and Misconduct in Public Office (Act in Excess of Lawful Authority). The officers were taken into custody, booked and were ordered released on their own recognizance, according to the Milwaukee Police Department (MPD) Source.
The MPD Source reported, the investigation showed that the criminal behavior was localized to a small group of officers at police District Five. The four officers being criminally charged are Jeffrey Dollhopf, 41, Jacob Knight, 31, Brian Kozelek, 33, and Michael Vagnini, 34. The officers years of service and number of charges filed are as follows: Dollhopf has 17 years of service, charged with two felony and two misdemeanor counts; Knight, 13 years of service, charged with one felony and one misdemeanor count; Kozelek, 5 years of service, charged with one felony and one misdemeanor count; Vagnini, 8 years of service, is charged with 14 felony counts and 11 misdemeanor counts. 
Each sexual assault and illegal strip search felony counts are punishable by 40 years in prison or a fine of $100,000 or both, if convicted. Each misconduct in public office misdemeanor count is punishable by 90 days in prison or a $1,000 fine or both, if convicted.
Some cavity searches included an officer using his finger to probe the anal of a detained suspect looking for illegal drugs, according to the criminal complaint.

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