COLUMBUS (WCMH) — The Columbus Division of Police announced Tuesday that it is abolishing its vice section within the Narcotics Bureau.
Vice-related crimes will now be addressed using a community-centered approach, according to CPD.
Chief Tom Quinlan met with remaining vice officers Tuesday and issued them assignment abolishment notices. Many of the officers previously assigned to vice had previously transferred to new assignments.
Seven officers will be given the opportunity to seek a new assignment within the Columbus Division of Police.
Two high profile cases preceded The Columbus Police Department’s internal review into its vice unit.
One was the arrest of Stormy Daniels last Summer.
Vice officers cuffed Daniels where she was performing at a North Columbus strip club.
The department dropped charges against Daniels but she still has a pending civil case.
Lawyer Chase Mallory represents her in both.
NBC asked Mallory what he thought about the news that CPD was disbanding its vice unit.
Mallory says he’s not surprised about the decision in light of his experience in past cases and what he found while representing Daniels.
“That was just I think clear recklessness and I think probably worse on that, definitely worse on that, they were warned by the prosecutor’s office that they should not be engaging in that type of investigation. They clearly didn’t even look at the statute they were using to arrest her and she was clearly targeted so I think that’s why CPD has made the correct decision to terminate that unit,” said Mallory.
Early in March, the Columbus Police Department announced their internal investigation was complete and found Stormy Daniels’ arrest was improper but not pre-planned or politically motivated.
Chief Quinlan said that the changes to the Division do not reflect wrongdoing on the part of all of the officers in the Vice Unit, nor the entire Division.
“Many officers who have worked Vice are dedicated professionals who responsibly carry out their duties,” said Chief Quinlan. “Today’s actions are an essential step to reaffirming community partnerships.”