Police association accuses Port Arthur Police Chief of plagiarizing statement to media

Police association claims Port Arthur chief copied a statement from another police chief

PORT ARTHUR - The Port Arthur Police Association is accusing the Port Arthur Police Chief of plagiarizing from another police chief in a statement released to 12News in late October.

The police association made the accusation in a post on its Facebook page on Thursday afternoon.

In the Facebook post the association accused Port Arthur Police Chief Patrick Melvin of lifting two sentences of a statement by Denver Police Chief Robert White.

A City of Port Arthur spokesperson released the statement by Chief Melvin to 12News on October 27, 2017, and it was published on 12NewsNow.com the same day.

The 12News article was updated later and now carries a date of November 6.

While the police association found two sentences in Melvin's statement to be suspect, 12News has determined that almost the entire statement was lifted from the Denver chief's statement.

MORE | Majority of PAPD Association lacks confidence in Police Chief -- 12NewsNow.com
MORE | Denver Police Union's survey shows 94 percent are not confident in chief -- 9News.com
MORE | Denver police union passes “no confidence” vote on Chief Robert White -- DenverPost.com

City names, years of service as a chief and one added sentence appeared to be the only things that differentiated Melvin's statement from White's.

12News' sister station, KUSA, in Denver, carried more of the statement by Denver Police Chief White on it's website, 9News.com.

12News also found an October 24, 2017, article on DenverPost.com that contained a shorter version of the statement by Chief White.

Chief White also faced a no-confidence vote from officers under his command according to the Denver Post article.

12News reached out to Chief Melvin who said "I went seeking some research on the internet for other chiefs throughout the country that have gone through a vote of no confidence 
and I saw several statements made by several chiefs."

"However, when I got to the one on the Denver chief that was the one that was most applicable to my view that spoke of accountability," he said.

"He spoke of the scrutiny and I utilized a lot of what he said because it's very similar to the situation that I have," Melvin told 12News.

Melvin also told 12News that he'd like to resolve the issues with the association so they can move forward.

A Port Arthur Police officer was searching online and reading about other cases where police chiefs received "no-confidence" votes from their officers when he noticed that the two statements had similarities Combined Law Enforcement Association of Texas (CLEAT) field representative, Tom Barbee told 12News.

Barbee declined to name the officer saying that he felt Chief Melvin had acted in a retaliatory fashion in the past.

The officer found the statement from Denver's Chief White at DenverPost.com Barbee said.

Chief Patrick Melvin's October 27, 2017 statement to 12News...
(Text differing from the Denver chief's statement have been bolded.)

I highly respect the men and women of the Port Arthur Police Department. I am now and have always been committed to doing what is best for the community and the Port Arthur Police Department.

Having been a Chief of Police for over 11 years, I understand that being Chief can come with scrutiny from those who may disagree with decisions being made or fully understand all aspects of the position.

PAPD is a great police department, but we must always find ways to be better as an agency.  I along with my staff, look forward to hearing from the Police Association and their issues so that we can work together to address and resolve them.

During my time in Port Arthur, we have proactively and professionally focused on improving our policies and culture, and these changes have been met with resistance by some.

However, it is my responsibility to make the right, and sometimes controversial, decisions for the betterment of our department and city. 

I am steadfast in my beliefs of service before self and will continue to do what is best for the residents of Port Arthur."

Denver Police Chief Robert White's statement From KUSA 9News.com...

I highly respect the men and women of the Denver Police Department. I am now and have always been committed to doing what is best for the community and the Denver Police Department.

Having been a Chief of Police for 20 years, I understand that being Chief can come with scrutiny from those who may disagree with decisions being made or fully understand all aspects of the position.

DPD is a great police department, but we must always find ways to be better as an agency.

During my time in Denver, we have focused on improving our policies and culture, and these changes have been met with resistance by some.

However, it is my responsibility to make the right, and sometimes controversial, decisions for the betterment of our department and city.

I am steadfast in my beliefs of service before self and will continue to do what is best for the residents of Denver."

© 2017 KBMT-TV


JOIN THE CONVERSATION

To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment