Spokane Police Abuses: Past to Present

The People of Spokane vs. Law Enforcement Abuse, Impunity, Corruption, and Cover-up

Ladies and gentleman, yourrrrrrrr Spokane Police Department (Take 1)

Posted by Arroyoribera on November 11, 2007

I must admit that to me it was quite a shock.

In September 2006, Spokane, Washington — our fair town — had just hired this upbeat, lively woman to be our police chief…

Chief Anne Kirkpatrick — September 2006

Imagine my surprise to learn that in May 2007, the city of Spokane had an apparently different woman as police chief. This lady…

Chief Anne Kirkpatrick — May 2007

An imposter?


Or maybe just a mere mortal finding out for herself that what Rick Mendoza of the Spokane Police Advisory Committee publicly called “the best police department in the United States” is far from it.

Call it a long string of that bad luck if you want.

But I will tell you one thing for certain.

I’d still rather have Anne Kirkpatrick — be it the September 2006 model or the May 2007 model — as Spokane police chief than this man…

Al Odenthal


On August 11, 2000, Spokane Assistant Police Chief Al Odenthal (and at one point a candidate for the new police chief position) intervened with SPD officers so that instead of arresting and jailing his daughter, they would instead release her. After an internal investigation, Odenthal was suspended for five days at a cost of about $2000 in wages.

In March 2005 Odenthal made arrangements for the Spokane Police Department to purchase a warehouse from former SPD captain Chuck Crabtree using the real estate services of former assistant police chief John Sullivan. Just two years earlier in 2003 Odenthal’s boss, Chief Roger Bragdon, had pled for lenient sentencing of Crabtree’s son, Jim, who was convicted of crack cocaine possession and dealing as well as vehicular assault stemming from a 2001 incident which nearly killed Sgt Earl Howerton. Jim Crabtree was a Spokane County sheriff’s deputy who became a drug-dealer.

Because of what Mayor Dennis called Deputy Chief Odenthal’s “botched” investigation, it initially appeared that a Spokane Fireman involved in photographing a minor girl in a Spokane firehouse could not be legally prosecuted, since SPD officer told the fireman to delete the photos. Incredibly and — as if he thinks the citizens of Spokane are absolute idiots — deputy chief Odenthal noted that prosecutors investigating the incident “found no intent by the officers to impair or obstruct the investigation.” Fortunately, the city is revisiting the case. Unfortunately, the case was been assigned to Odenthal’s fellow assistant police chief Bruce Richards (former chief of detectives) meaning he will be investigating one of his own.


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