Records show internal, citizen complaints against Officer O'Connell


by Othello Richards &

Posted on April 11, 2012 at 4:59 PM

Updated Tuesday, Nov 5 at 8:08 PM

SPOKANE-- City officials and the Spokane County Sheriff's Office say no special treatment was given to an officer whose daughter shot herself with his duty gun.

Authorities tell us Officer Barry O’Connell’s daughter was at their home Sunday with neighbors and family when she shot herself in the leg with her dad's handgun. Police didn't inform the public until Tuesday.

KREM 2 news obtained the internal affairs history for officer Barry O'onnell.

Spokane police tell us some of the things are normal for an officer who's been on the force for 18 years.

O’Connell has been in six accidents. He has five citizen complaints against him and four internal complaints.
The complaints include, conduct unbecoming of an officer, untruthfulness, insubordination and sexual harassment. Two of the complaints resulted in suspensions; one for a week in 2009 and one for two weeks in 2010.

Click here to read the full document.

KREM 2's Othello Richards uncovered why the city waited to tell anyone. 

We asked officials, and the public's has been wondering, whether there was any special treatment given because this case involved a police officer.

 It took the department until Tuesday to tell the public what happened.

Spokane count sheriff deputy Craig Chamberlain says authorities knew there would be a lot of public interest in the case, so they wanted to give investigators a chance to go through their investigation without distraction. “On the humanity side of things, this individual’s 10-year-old daughter had a severe injury. We wanted to give him time to deal with his daughter to deal with her safety.”

Deputy Craig Chamberlain said, “we've heard other people say if it was anyone else this would have been reported the day it happened and that’s not necessarily true.”

Spokane city officials said the reason it came out on Tuesday, was because agencies involved and it requires more coordination.

O’Connell reportedly has as history of internal affairs investigations.
The Spokane police department says it’s working to determine what it can legally release. 

Officer Barry O’Connell’s daughter is listed in stable condition.