By Kevin Hogencamp
Chief John Proctor is withholding public information and refusing to provide details about the Police Department’s slow and otherwise botched response to 911 calls about vandalism and disorderly conduct on a recent evening at Westover High School.
Indeed, the vandalism continued after a police officer responded and left the scene, according to public records based on the officer’s response to a 911 Center dispatcher, which conflicts with a police commander’s account of the incident.
Albany Fire Department officials responded immediately to a reporter’s request with a detailed account of the incident from the 911 Center’s perspective. Proctor, meanwhile, refuses to acknowledge information requests.
Here’s what happened at Westover on May 27 according to public records provided by Jim Vaught, the Albany Fire Department’s deputy emergency management director.
Albany 9-1-1, which is managed by the Fire Department, received three calls from a citizen about teenagers riding on the outside of a vehicle on Partridge Drive, driving across the football field at Westover, and then going down the alley between Partridge and Gillionville Road.
In the first call at 9:55:38 p.m., the citizen reported that a teen was riding while standing on the vehicle’s running board and hanging onto the luggage rack of a vehicle. At 9:56:37, the call was “routed for dispatch” until a police officer was available. At 9:59:56, Officer Janeel Herring became available and was dispatched. Herring reported to the 911 Center that that he arrived at the scene at 10:07:21 and left at 10:13:01 and – in those five or six minutes – questioned the suspects, gave them criminal trespass warnings, and left the scene, according to Albany police Cmdr. Darren Abner.
A second call was received from the citizen at 9:08:22, while Herring was on the scene, stating that the kids were still at Westover and tearing up the track and football field. The citizen advised that he hadn’t seen the police as yet. He then gave descriptions of more vehicles that were on the property and advised that they were the same kids that he had called about earlier. The call was routed for dispatch at 10:10:16 and a police supervisor then inquired over the radio about the call holding and directed 911 to dispatch it. Two other officers were dispatched at 10:17:54. While en route, those officers were reassigned to an armed robbery by the police supervisor, and the Herring was dispatched to return to Westover at 10:34:53. Herring returned to the scene at 10:39:28.
A third call was received from the citizen at 10:43:25. The citizen said that a police officer still had not arrived.
Although Proctor refuses to provide information about the matter, in spite of Georgia law requiring him to do so, Abner provides a starkly different account than Vaught about the sequence of events. In an e-mail to Commissioner Roger Marietta, Abner says that the 911 Center received the citizen’s call at 10:08 p.m., Herring was dispatched at 10:34 p.m., and she arrived at 10:39 p.m. Herring completed paperwork referencing that grass at the school was damaged and that criminal trespass warnings were issued to the responsible individuals, and Herring left at 11:05, Abner said. Another officer, Larry Milledge, responded and assisted with the investigation, Abner said.
The Albany Journal asked Proctor to provide information regarding the incident and also specifically requested:
n Why there was a slow response?
n How many police officers were working in Albany at that time?
n How many police officers were working in the quadrant that includes Westover High at that time?
n What each of the police officers who were working in Albany were working on at the time of this 911 call?
n The Police Department’s average response time
Proctor, however, refused to respond to the Journal’s request; thus, it’s unclear whether it’s Herring, Abner or Vaught who is providing an inaccurate account of the matter. And it’s unclear whether why no one was charged with a crime.
Meanwhile, Vaught explained the 911 Center’s call routing system. “Dispatchers use Computer Aided Dispatching (CAD) to assign available officers to 9-1-1 calls,” he said. “Albany Police Department CAD priorities were developed by APD. Dispatchers don’t determine which call is more important; they dispatch based on the priority assigned by CAD.
“However, when there are no officers available, calls can stack and as officers become available they are dispatched based on the CAD assigned priority. Thus, when the officer arrives at the event, it is common for them to state, they just got the call. If the calls keep coming, without available officers to respond, the dispatcher has a special call sign which tells the APD shift supervisor to call APD dispatcher. They discuss the situation and the APD shift supervisor can pull or reassign officers. The 911 dispatchers assign officers based on CAD priority and officer availability.”
The facts are simple here, why are we taxpayers fighting each other. Those who wrote comment are just that their points of view. The chief of police as one person may not fight and stop crime in albany, but he was hired as the top cop who is suppose to come up with ways to reduce crime in this city and may I say we are paying him a good penny to solve the crime problem. So to the write with this mess up views, you are incorrect. We as taxpayers havw done our part by paying our taxes. Look at it as you hire a lawn man to cut your grass and you prepaid him and you have the worse looking lawn on the block. You would fire your lawn man quickly. All Lott hired this guy from the outside to come here and solve our crime problem, but nothing is happening other than major crime increase.
We are living in fear; just as the US arm forces went to the middle east to restore order, our police APD is paid well by us to reduce and get rid of crime. Our businesses are leaving for Lee county who crime rate is always down. Poor police service affect the core of our community.
Yes we should hold proctor responsible for the crime problem and he was hired to fix it. As you can see he nor anyone in the police department is doing anything to address the high increase in crime. Why hire a person who is not certified in this state as a police officer as the APD top cop. He cannot even make an arrest in this city, tell me one thing, not two, just one thing this guy has done to fight crime in this city, NOT ONE DAMM THING.
I agree that Lott did not hire the best man for this job. We do not have time for a top cop to become certified or at least show leadership and address the crime problem.
Lott messed up again. Now everyone keep brining up Chief Brown from ASU and if he was one of the top three candidates, and we all can see what he has done at the university, and his experience from Miami Police Department, he knows the community, he appears to be the best man for the job, but he may not be involved in the politics in this city and Lott may be protecting his cronies in the police department, fearing that Chief Brown may fire all of the top non effective leader in the police department. We need changes inside the department and maybe Chief Brown could have reduce the poor leadership.
I am not a cop, but I have been on the ASU campus and anyone can see how Chief Brown has changed the campus. I heard that crime is very low and the community is happy with Chief Brown leadership. I am sure ASU is happy to keep Chief Brown as their Chief. Proctor has had nearly two months to fix this mess, but nothing has changed other than increase crime. Everyday the media front story is about the lawlessness in this city. Jobs are few, and criminals have taken over this city.
I do not go out at night and when i do I am packing, because the police cannot protect men and my two girls and wife. I will use my peice if my family is attacked. We cannot go out in this city and try to have a social life because of crime.
Yes APD is the agency that is to fight crime and Mr. Lott should hire the best man for chief of police and obviously he did not. I was told that 10 of APD officer have quit the department and went and worked for Chief Brown at ASU Police. Chief Brown must be doing something right, for that many officer to leave APD and work for ASU Police. I called ASU Police and was told that their starting salary is $32,000. Officers leaving APD to work for Chief Brown probably was not seen by Lott as positive and could be why Lott did not pick Chief Brown, who is the most quailified. If he did not make the top three then I think that GACCP saw him as a good candidate. Why was he not selected by Lott. I do not know proctor but I have given him a chance and I see not results other than increased crime.
Lott is responsible to taxpayer ro hire the very best with our dollars.
And yes I am considering moving to Lee County, with my family. We are living in fear in this city.
Smart citizens of Albany do not need you speaking for us and saying how we feel, because not all of us feel that way! Ask yourself that same question, when was the last time you prevented crime.
Besides, how can an officer prevent when a girlfriend allow that abusive boyfriend back into her home cause he pays her bills, or how can a police officer prevent someone from stealing a car with the victim leaves it on and running, how can a cop prevent your house from being broken into when you leave all the darn blinds and window treatment open for any and everyone to see inside of your home!?
When you find the real police officers, please tell them to fill out an application; better yet, since you have so much to say is wrong, you fill one out!
To the officer that wrote in, not all citizens feel the way the person before me does. Continue to do what you can and be safe! Thanks for serving OUR city! GOD BLESS!
WOW! I do not think this cop is on drugs, what I think this Police Officer is saying is unless you are a Police Officer, you may not know what they deal with. How can you say this Officer is not doing his job, when you have no idea if they even work for APD. Comments like that show how ignorant some citizens of Albany can be! Who stated that this Officer was not doing his job? I did not read where his comments indicated that he was not doing his job. Maybe you read something I did not see. APD has at any given day and time 15 to maybe 20 officers on the street! Did you read what I said, 15-20 people. How in the HELL do you expect 20 people to stop crime all over the City of Albany?
When Chief Younger was in charge, the citizens of Albany said he was not a people person and did not communicate with the citizens enough. Now Chief Proctor, (whether you choose to give him his proper title or not) is communicating with the citizens and you are still complaining! Which way do you want it? Make up your mind! To correct your statement as to “we taxpayers” Police Officers that live in the City of Albany, Dougherty County are TAXPAYERS TOO!!!!! To ask that Chief Proctor to correct the cities crime in just a few weeks is crazy! What have you done to stop any crime…….oh as you typed NOTHING!
I know Chief Brown at ASU as well. I have even sat down and had dinner with him on numerous occasions; however, at the same time nothing will be corrected in just a couple of weeks! Everything takes time. Remember there is a time and place for everything. I cannot comment on whether or not the Officer works for APD; however, if you did not want Adams and Lott in office go out and vote them out!
The Officers that have been “caught” doing unethical things deserve to be fired; however, the City of Albany, Dougherty County Sheriff’s Office, DCP and APD all have their share of problems. Now as you put down this police officer, think about how the city would be if there were only the Sheriff’s Department 5 or 6 deputies working the entire City of Albany? If APD’s officers went on strike you would probably eat these words you are typing and saying!
You keep indicating that Chief Proctor has not done anything because he is not a certified GA peace officer. What can ONE MAN DO ALONE? Now don’t hold your breathe! Because if one person could stop all the crime in Albany, THEN WHY HAVEN’T YOU DONE IT YET????? If there are good officer at APD and I am more than positive there are, then stop judging them solely on a police chief. The officers themselves cannot make the decisions; they just have to follow them! Trust me, no officer is working only because of money, because if that were me; WHEW, no job is worth my life!
Who said that flipping burgers is a real job? By the way, what exactly do you do all day? POLICE, NO! You just complain about something you do not know anything about! While you are praising the Sheriff’s Office so, please know that they have plenty of LAZY A—cops too! They sit at the jail all day eating food and getting fat!
I am not a police officer; however, I do not think talking bad about them helps us either. I am a taxpayer as well and I do not think we are wasting our money. Go buy your gun sir/ma’am and when that suspect comes into your house, beat you’re a—with your d— gun, don’t call the police! Along with the fact that if you hate Albany that much to call it a hell hole, then move the F— out!
Officer tired of citizen’s complaints says:
Ok. I would like to say thanks for Kevin’s will to publish information, news and everything else; however, all of you citizens that have NO IDEA what you are talking about upset me! I am a CERTIFIED GA PEACE OFFICER and there are several things that you have mistaken! In regards to salaries, CHIEF PROCTOR’s salary is no different from that of what Chief Younger’s was! Secondly, you continue to refer to the three candidates and say that Chief Proctor would not have been one of the top two; HAD City Manager Lott hired the “WHITE” candidate, he too was not a GA PEACE OFFICER; therefore, he TOO would have had to wait! Now in regards to the “BLOOD” on Chief Proctor’s hands. Unless you were there then neither you nor I know the WHOLE STORY! You just like I only know what you have read and what is being reported! Therefore, unless you have walked in our shoes, deal with OTHER FOLKS ISSUES, and risk your life for others on a daily basis; I would ask that you not comment on something you do not know! Besides other than that one issue, what else has he done wrong…NOTHING! Over 28 years as an officer, regardless of what state, that is great. Besides Chief Brown is no angel himself, neither are you! No one is perfect! He who lives in a glass house, PLEASE CAST THE FIRST STONE! Now do not get me wrong things are bad now; however, if Officers cannot do any more than the GEORGIA LAW allow us to! It is called people’s civil rights and constitutional rights! At the same time, why not be upset with the Judges and Attorneys that let the repeat offenders out as soon as the ink dries on the warrant packets. On the other hand, the RYDC and juvenile courts that release these offenders with just a “written essay”. Stop downing the Police Department; instead, encourage and vote for more pay, better salaries, etc. Did you know that we as officers are not allowed to work overtime because of the economics! Nevertheless, those are not issues that you as citizens are concerned with! Did you know that an investigation cannot be conducted properly because we don’t have enough manpower to do so?! Case loads too high, no overtime allowed, and then we have to be ridiculed by citizens!! What more do you expect. Sit back for a second and think….could you do my job? If so, PLEASE APPLY! IF not, please pray that GOD gives us the strength, knowledge and endurance to make the City of Albany a better place to live and stop bashing anyone that put into office.
Lott your days in office are numbered. As a taxpayer, I along with Ms Hope Campbell and others will be watching and waiting for your choice of chief to turn things around in this city and we do not have 6 months to a year of robberies, murders, gang activities, shootings, burglaries, and crime overall to increase while Proctor try to complete the police academy and become certified. He cannot even wear a police uniform without violating Georgia law of impersonating a police office. POST advised they had to almost bring charges against ex-chief Younger for wearing a uniform and gun without first completing the police academy. We need action NOW to address the crime in our city. Proctor cannot run the next drug bust because he already cost a person their life. Will the City of Albany be sued next for dumb decision of an inept leader like Proctor? This man must be a payoff for a favor for Lott or Mayor Adam. I too Ms Campbell do not understand Lott’s decision. $6,000 for moving expense, how in hell is that justified, plus $30,000 severance pay and $96,000 salary more that what the job offered for a man with blood on his hands, not POST certified with 6 to 8 month if he pass the training, and very little successful accomplishments, no substance other than politic. Keep holding these leaders accountable. Here we go again, allowing another poor choice by Lott. One would think he learned from the Younger experience. I along with several citizens will appear before the commission to ask for a thorough review of City Manager Lott choice and Proctor salary who is being paid more than ex-chief Younger who became POST certified. I am watching and waiting for change to occur at the top of city government. Mr. Proctor needs to learn from his deadly mistake and implement this policy at APD. One person died as a result; let’s make sure no one elso does.
Many of you are aware of news stories about the death of a police informant in Florida.
Lott is looking for a scapegoat for making another bad choice. Stevie Wonder can see that Proctor is not more qualified than these two officers. Now, Chief Brown who was the only candidate I think that could hit the ground on day one and start cleaning up the department internal problems and image and immediately start fighting crime in this city. Look at how he has changed ASU Police. Chief Brown is already a certified Georgia peace officer, has been working in the city at ASU for five year, developed working relationship with other law enforcement agencies, community leaders, businesses. I suggest that the Journal interview Chief Brown and Commander Evan and get their take on this dumb decision made by Lott. Conduct a survey asking the taxpayers and your readers who they prefer as Chief of Albany Police Department; Chief Brown, Commander Evans or Proctor? I am sure with a public record request; you can get copies of their resumes. I will bet $300 to the Journal charity of choice that Proctor will not be in the top two. Lott does not want a strong Chief of Police who needs to clean up the problems inside of APD and this community. Lott must be afraid of strong leadership or he is protecting the cronies in the department and possible corruption by himself and other city leaders. A large percentage of these officers are crocks wearing a uniform. I don’t call them for anything; I call the Sheriff Office, not even DCP.
Our city is being robbed by the Mayor, Commissioners, and Lott for failure to keep us safe. I agree Mr. Lott; you should resign and take Proctor. Proctor is another bad one of Lott’s choice like Chief Younger who never rose to the occasion as chief, so Lott forced him out with a promise not to tell the dirt they have on each other.
Hello Kevin Hogencamp:
Thank you for keep us informed with the truth about the so call city leaders
I want to thank publisher Kevin Hogencamp for a needed article exposing City Manager Alfred Lott constant stupid decisions, especially, the hiring of John Proctor as Chief of the Albany Police Department. Hope Campbell is a woman of courage who expressed how many Albanian feel about Lott’s choice for Chief. Not only does Proctor have Blood on his Hands, he is not qualified for the overpaid position given him. Proctor is not even a certified police officer in the State of Georgia. He is nothing more than a citizen like me with no arrest powers. This man has to first complete 3 months of Georgia Police Academy before he can be identified as a police officer. He does not even have arrest authority as his lowest ranking police officer. I know several officers who expressed that passing the demands of the police academy is very difficult, especially for a man like Proctor, look at his lack of motivation with no idea for fighting crime in our city. I refuse to address him as Chief until he earns his Georgia peace officer arrest powers. These are some of the things that make me and many other taxpayers question Lott’s decision to hire this guy as the best qualified. Number one his poor judgment that lead to the death of a civilian CI who was helping him and he failed to follow simply protocol to protect the informant that cost the confidential informant her life. Proctor knows nothing about Albany and the challenges it face with out of control crime, he can never be effective in setting up drug stings with this dumb mess over his head, will he implement new policies at APD for his past mistake, he is damaged goods and Lott qualified this guy as the best candidate out of five then the top three, even with Proctor needing to complete the police academy to be certified to enforce Georgia laws, Proctor need to learn the needs and pulse of all of the Albany communities, Proctor do not know anything about Georgia law, Proctor do not know other state law enforcement agency heads other than their names, Proctor has no plan to address the lawlessness in this city, City Manager Lott lied that the head of Georgia Association of Chief of Police Frank Rotunda that he was advised that Proctor was the top and best qualified candidate, not true. I spoke to Mr. Rotunda and he advised that he never informed Lott that Proctor was the best qualified candidate. Mr. Rotunda advised GACP only gave Lott the top five candidates and the top three who were Commander Evans, Chief Brown and Proctor in no specific order, all were equally qualified to be chief of police, but the decision was totally Lott’s who is trying to create a disclaimer for selecting Proctor over Chief Brown from Albany State University Police Department and Commander Evans from Virginia, a proven drug and gang buster or maybe he was not selected because he is White.
on A. says:
Thank you, thank you, thank you Kevin Hogencamp for continue to tell the truth and do what you can to let us know the real story about how our tax money is spent. It’s too bad that none of the Commissioners, including the formerly esteemed Roger Marietta, have the guts to fight for what’s right.
I hate to say it, but it appears to be business as usual in the APD. My hopes and dreams for something better than what we have had are fading…