Body Cam Footage Released Of Controversial Arrest By Vian Officer

VIAN (KFSM) -- The city is investigating a Vian police chief and an officer for potential wrongdoing after both submitted letters of resignation this week.

Chief Ted Johnson announced his resignation on Wednesday (May 10), but he said he will work through Monday (May 15). Johnson submitted his resignation in support of one of his officers, Lindsey Green, who also stepped down following an incident in which she arrested a councilman's son.

Both said small-town politics are to blame for their resignations.

"I support her and all of my officers 100 percent," Johnson said.

On Tuesday (May 2) Green pulled over an individual, a city councilman's son, on a traffic violation after receiving a tip from an off-duty officer that the man was driving on a suspended license, according to an arrest report. This was the second time the man had been pulled over for driving while his license was revoked, so Green arrested him. He is currently paying fines for that first violation.

On the way to the jail Green asked Johnson about reducing the man's fine, but Johnson advised against it saying that he didn't learn his lesson the first time.

The report states that after booking the man in the Sequoyah County Detention Center, Green returned to the town hall. City Attorney Larry Vickers began yelling at Green for placing the councilman's son under arrest, saying that she didn't have probable cause to arrest the man and that the ticket should be dismissed.

"It's ethics. The law is for everyone. It doesn't matter if your dad is a council member or not," Green said. "They are trying to say probable cause for pulling  him over was wrong. That I went off another officer word which is no different than a civilian calling you saying 'this guy is driving drunk down the road'. I got back to City Hall and I was not so nicely informed who he was and city attorney contacted me saying 'you had no reason to arrest him. You didn't have a probable cause, it's an illegal arrest'. It was ordered for me to drop the ticket and for him to be released from jail. After this incident I was told 'more than likely you are going to get fired'. I didn't want to give them the satisfaction of firing me because I know that I am in the right. I don't want a termination on my record."

Shortly afterward Mayor Dennis Fletcher came to the town hall and told the court clerk to remove the man from jail, the report states. The man was released from jail just 15 minutes after he was booked.

Green submitted her resignation earlier this week.

The city of Vian and Vickers announced they are looking into Johnson's and Green's actions to see if there was any wrongdoing. The investigation could be turned over to an outside agency.

 

 

9 comments

  • Brian McElhaney

    The “Idiot” was BEHIND THE WHEEL, ON PUBLIC ROADWAY ON A SUSPENDED LICENSE!
    Officer Green had every right to stop & arrest!
    Enough Said! Just “MORE SMALL TOWN CORRUPT” politicians & public officials!!!

  • Bob Barr

    Very much so, but what do you expect from a Mayor that is not even a High School graduate?
    Constant crumb in school, the rules did not apply to him, and dropped out the third nine weeks.

  • Pooh (@thafiveoh)

    So the city of Vian is investigating any wrongdoing. What about investigating the city of Vian for obstructing an officer in the performance of her duties? A LEGITIMATE city attorney would use proper language when referring to a vehicle stop. It’s reasonable suspicion to justify a traffic stop, not probable cause. The officers were in the right.

  • Jerry Unruh

    If the City Attorney Larry Vickers is the one I know from another small Oklahoma Town I am really disappointed in him. I figured he was a better person than that. He should have told the Vian Council to let a court decide. Instead he became Judge and Jury

  • James Palmer

    They should not have had to quit over the arrest of the repeat offender who drove under a suspended license. Nor should they have to be under investigation, just because of corruption within the city. This is outrageous and should be given to outside government agencies for investigation as soon as possible. This is outrageous.

  • justintime280

    Probable Cause for a traffic stop?
    I’m fairly certain that Reasonable Suspicion is all that’s needed for a basic traffic stop and that’s a very broad range of definition….. which, in all likelihood, includes acting upon citizen complaints and/or reports of suspicious drivers (possible DUI, reckless driving, ect….) to the appropriate law enforcement entity.
    Also, the Mayor had the Clerk dismiss the ticket and release him? I’d like to read the statutes that give any Mayor the rights and ability to bypass the Judicial process and act as Judge and Jury in any situation concerning a private citizens actions.
    This is a Mayor that is acting like a Dictator, not someone who sincerely cares for the people.

    If this kid hadn’t been the child of a council member, and the stop resulted in a drug or DWI arrest, this officer would be reaping the praise of the Mayor as an excellent example of acting upon a citizen report and enforcing the law.

  • Randy Ingle

    Small town politics and I can only hope an outside investigation will end up with the replacement of those who have violated the law but I won’t hold my breath.

Comments are closed.