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CT Ticket Scandal Draws Federal Scrutiny

As controversy brews over claims of ticket falsification by Connecticut State Police that skewed racial profiling data, federal authorities subpoenaed records and ordered the head of the state’s police to meet with them, CT Insider reports. Special Agent Olaf Sigaud, from the Office of Inspector General for the U.S. Department of Transportation, ordered State Police Colonel Stavros Mellekas to meet with him Wednesday. The subpoena also ordered the department to turn over a list of names that correspond to 1,301 unique employee identification numbers. The number of employee IDs referenced matches how many troopers were analyzed in a recently published audit that found a “high likelihood” hundreds of Connecticut troopers collectively falsified tens of thousands of traffic ticket records over much of the past decade.

The findings allege systemic violations of state law and that the misreporting skewed racial profiling data, making it appear troopers ticketed more white drivers and fewer minority drivers than they really did. Auditors said their monthslong review did not attempt to determine if the disparities were intentional. Since the audit's release, Connecticut's Chief State's Attorney opened a criminal probe and Gov. Ned Lamont announced Deirdre M. Daly, a former U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut, will lead an independent review. State lawmakers plan to hold an informational meeting on the findings Wednesday. The audit, which launched last fall, was prompted by an investigation that uncovered internal records showing state police investigators in 2018 discovered four troopers had collectively entered at least 636 fake tickets into the state police computer system over a nine-month stretch to make it appear they were more productive than they actually were. The troopers did so for their own personal benefit, internal investigators concluded.


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