LMPD officer breaks down over sex abuse scandal during newly rel - WDRB 41 Louisville News

LMPD officer breaks down over sex abuse scandal during newly released deposition

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Lt. Jimmy Harper Lt. Jimmy Harper

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The Louisville Metro Police Department officer suing his department for retaliation broke down in tears talking about the sex scandal surrounding the LMPD Explorer Program.

The statement came on Wednesday during a recorded deposition that WDRB obtained on Thursday. In the deposition, Lt. Jimmy Harper says he begged Louisville Metro Council members to get an outside agency to look into claims of rape. 

"We knew this in 2013 as a police department," Harper said, breaking down. "We had kids...and then knowing that another allegation is made. How many kids between that time did we let get hurt and harmed for our inaction and not investigating that program that we should have? And it angered me because it was wrong."

Last summer, LMPD Chief Steve Conrad gave Harper the option to take a demotion or retire as part of a department-wide reorganization.

Harper refused to retire. He expressed concern to Mayor Greg Fischer about Conrad's call to move officers from each division to form a full-time SWAT team. He also told several Louisville Metro Council members the police department was blowing more than $1 million in taxpayer-funded overtime, with little planning or effect on crime reduction. 

Harper says the chief told him he was sharing too much.

During the deposition, Harper explained that one of those tense conversations on an email involving gangs was secretly recorded. 

"Why did you record that conversation?" Harper was asked during the deposition.

"At that point after a prior incident, I was becoming nervous about what I was doing and the things that I had been doing my entire time in the 2nd Division as far as crime information, and becoming concerned about going to this and not knowing what was going to be levied against me as far as mentioning the word 'gang' in an email," Harper replied.

Harper said Conrad was also upset he told Fischer that he thought eliminating flex platoons was a mistake. But Harper said Fischer asked his opinion, and he gave him his honest answer.

"I'm charged with an offense I did not commit," he said. "That's like me going out here and charging someone with murder when all they did was accidentally hit a car."

WDRB has reached out to Chief Conrad's office for a response on Harper's deposition, but so far we have not heard back.

The deposition lasted more than four hours. 

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