The FBI has launched an investigation into the Detroit Police Department following allegations that its narcotics officers were improperly obtaining search warrants for raids and stealing evidence and money from drug houses and marijuana dispensaries, sources familiar with the probe told Motor City Muckraker.
The investigation, which has been ongoing for more than a month, is aimed at a recently disbanded narcotics unit. Six members of the unit were recently suspended with pay after surveillance video showed them removing a box during a drug raid and failing to log it as evidence, according to Police Chief James Craig.
But FBI agents are looking far beyond a single case. The unit is accused of improperly gaining search warrants for an untold number of houses and marijuana dispensaries, where money and drugs were seized and never logged. Many of the cases have not been prosecuted.
The Detroit Police Department, which is conducing an internal investigation, declined to discuss the case.
“We are not making any comments relative to this issue until the whole investigation is complete,” Detroit Police Sgt. Michael Woody said.
The probe comes as the city is asking a court to end 11 years of federal oversight of the police department.
Steve Neavling lives and works in Detroit as an investigative journalist. His stories have uncovered corruption, led to arrests and reforms and prompted FBI investigations.