Hey Glenn County— where are the records?
In fact, the log reveals a paltry 30 percent of the calls and police activity it’s required to contain by law. So says an exhaustive study performed by inexhaustible Sacramento Valley Mirror editor Tim Crews, who reported in his twice-weekly newspaper this week that the Glenn County police log is flagrantly incomplete.
Crews, who has for years gleefully been a thorn in the side of the well-entrenched agencies he covers, reported this week that a full 70 percent of the police activity that should have been reported in the log was left out. The study examined 30 days’ worth of all police service rendered in the county—908 pages—which included the Sheriff’s Department, Willows Police Department, Orland Police Department, animal control and 9-1-1 medical and fire calls.
Law enforcement agencies are required by public-records laws to provide a log of police service—minus “sensitive” calls involving minors, child abuse, rape and ongoing investigations—to the public. In Glenn County’s case, Crews reported, of the 285 calls that should have been listed in the log, only 30 percent—or 85—actually were.
Left out were reports of everything from loose cows and malicious graffiti (with two reports each), to burglaries (three incidents), rape (one report), potential suicide (one report), and the finding of a dead body.
Glenn County Sheriff Bob Shadley was on vacation until next week and unable to comment on the story, and his undersheriff, Glen Padula, was said to be in training for the rest of the week and unavailable.
Crews said he got suspicious that he wasn’t getting everything he should have in the log when some of his inside sources started telling him it was being censored for his sake. He’s stopped running the log in his paper, at least for now, and said he hopes to start auditing police logs all over the region.
"People say about journalists that we’re too suspicious, that we don’t trust anyone," Crews said. "I think it’s just the opposite. We journalists trust far too much. Sometimes you have to take a close look at what you’re getting to make sure it’s what you’re supposed to be getting."