Those deficiencies included not conducting proper follow-up, not entering documentation in a timely manner and insufficient documentation or none at all.
The majority of the deficiencies occurred between 2008 and 2012, HPD officials said.
A lengthy investigation determined the major problems identified were the direct result of the actions of one individual — Sgt. Ryan Chandler. Out of the 24 cases, 21 were connected to Chandler. Chandler also lied during the investigation, HPD said.
Chandler was cited for attention to duty, untruthfulness, insubordination, evidentiary procedure and controls and sound judgment. McClelland indefinitely suspended him Friday.
Four other officers — K. Carr, B. Oxspring, R. Moreno and L. Lovelace — were each cited for attention to duty for other policy violations in these cases.
Ofc. Carr received a 10-day suspension, Ofc. Lovelace received a five-day suspension, Ofc. Moreno received a two-day suspension and Ofc. Oxspring received a written reprimand.
Three other supervisors were cited as well — Lieutenants J. McGalin and R. Lakind and Sergeant B. Roberts.
Roberts received a five-day suspension, McGalin received a one-day suspension and Lakind received a written reprimand.
“I want to let the public know that in no way is this indicative of the 5300 men and women who work hard every day in protecting and serving this city,” McClelland said. “I also want to state that I have complete confidence in the Homicide Division. I fully expect all my commanders to constantly look for ways to make things better and improve processes and procedures. This investigation is an example of how we look for deficiencies and develop better processes.”
HPD said it continue to pursue each and every lead as it pertains to homicide investigations. New processes and procedures have been put in place as a result of this investigation, such as stricter mandates/controls regarding file submissions, improved file preparation, tighter security controls and documentation of the file room and creation of automated management reports.
Mayor Annise Parker released the following statement in response to the announcements:
“The severity of this cannot be minimized. The victims and family members involved in these cases deserved better. However, the action of a few individuals should not devalue the work done by the rest of the homicide division, or by the 5,300 men and women who serve and protect our city on a daily basis.
Chief McClelland has taken effective and corrective action regarding the officers involved and has tightened policies and procedures to keep this from happening again. The public can rest assured that HPD will pursue every possible lead when it comes to murder investigations.”