After Shooting, Killing Unarmed Teen Driver, KS Officer Was Paid $70K Severance
According to The Washington Post, approximately six weeks after an Overland Park, Kansas police officer “fired 13 shots into a minivan driven by an unarmed 17-year-old in 2018, killing him, the city paid the officer $70,000 in a severance agreement, the teen’s mother recently discovered.”
- Kansas police officer Clayton Jenison claimed that he thought John Albers, “whose friends called police because they believed he was suicidal, was going to run him over, though the videos showed Jenison was never in the van’s path. It was not clear, until the shooting started, that Albers ever knew Jenison was outside the family’s home,” the report continued.
- In February 2018, the Johnson County district attorney announced that the “officer would not be charged and that the slaying was justifiable,” The Post wrote. “Overland Park officials did not disclose the following month that they paid a severance package in March 2018 to Jenison totaling more than $81,000, though records show his salary was roughly $46,000.”
- Sheila Albers, mother of John Albers, launched an organization dedicated to improving police training in Kansas. On Sunday, she found “payroll records for the Overland Park police in a government database, and she noticed that Jenison was paid $81,040 in 2018,” the report stated.
- Albers also noted that the District Attorney Steve Howe and Police Chief Frank Donchez “announced Jenison’s resignation on Feb. 20, 2018, while the city apparently was still negotiating the officer’s severance package, which City spokesman Sean Reilly said was completed in March 2018.”
“I have always questioned the integrity of the investigation,” Albers said. “You can’t conduct an impartial, thorough investigation of police misconduct while simultaneously negotiating a financial buyout.”
Albers also added that the money paid to Jenison “could have funded Crisis Intervention Team training to prevent unnecessary violence in the future. Overland Park is a microcosm of the wider problem we have across the country: lack of transparency, failed systems of accountability, and leadership that neglects its duty to protect and serve the public.”