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CCPD Internal Affairs investigation: Detective lied on application

By Staff | Jul 29, 2016

Internal Affairs investigations opened against a now-former Cape Coral Police Department detective found that the officer lied during his employment process and did not properly perform his duties.

Kordelle L. McKissack resigned on June 29 after the department’s Professional Standards Bureau opened an investigation into information that had come to light days earlier at a court proceeding. He had testified that he was forced to resign in 2003 from his prior department over a rape allegation.

In applying to the CCPD, McKissack swore in a January 2004 affidavit that he had not resigned from another agency under investigation. He also swore he was not under investigation for wrongdoing.

The IA investigation found that McKissack had been forced to resign from the Spring Hill Police Department in Tennessee, where he had been employed since 1992, after being accused of a rape in July 2003. The case remained opened with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation until June 2004, when a grand jury found that there was no probable cause to indict.

“Both of the above mentioned facts are in direct contrast to how Detective McKissack answered statements on the Florida Department of Law Enforcement Affidavit of Application, which is a sworn affidavit, shortly after being hired by the Cape Coral Police Department,” the IA document states.

Capt. Daren McKenna, of the CCPD’s Professional Standards Bureau, determined that the two allegations against McKissack – that he knowingly made false statements or intentionally misrepresented facts and falsified documents related to his city employment – were sustained.

“The investigation disclosed sufficient evidence to prove clearly the allegation made in the complaint,” he wrote for each of the allegations outlined in the official documents.

McKenna noted that during his hiring, there was “no mention of a rape investigation involving McKissack, nor was there any mention of him resigning” by the Tennessee agency’s police chief.

The only negative thing the chief mentioned was that McKissack’s girlfriend had filed a compliant in 2001, stating that McKissack was buying beer for underage girls. The chief said it was unfounded.

In March, a separate IA investigation was opened on behalf of the State Attorney’s Office. It alleged that he was intentionally untruthful in writing a search warrant and at a “Motion to Suppress” hearing.

A month earlier, charges had been dropped in a case after a judge determined that McKissack lied under oath and obtained a search warrant by falsifying information from a tip. Judge Ramiro Manalich reported in his order granting suppression of the warrant that McKissack’s “credibility is impaired.”

“McKissack knowing put misinformation into the affidavit, and this misinformation was the basis and impetus for the investigation upon which the affidavit and warrant were based,” Manalich wrote.

Following the order granting suppression, the CCPD was contacted by SAO Felony Division Chief Larry Justham. He provided a list of cases in which McKissack would no longer be used as a witness.

According to the email, there were 19 open cases and 15 inactive cases as of March 17.

“In all of these cases, we will not be able to use the detective as a witness,” Justham wrote. “We may be able to proceed on some if he is just an incidental witness and won’t be needed for testimony.”

McKenna and Lt. Steve Barnes, also of the CCPD’s Professional Standards Bureau, determined in the investigation that three allegations against McKissack – that he conducted himself in an improper manner with inappropriate demeanor or engaged in conduct unbecoming a public employee and member of the department, that he knowingly made false statements or intentionally misrepresented facts, and that his actions or conduct was detrimental to the interests of the city – were not sustained.

However, a fourth allegation claiming that he did not properly perform his duties was sustained.

“Detective McKissack did not thoroughly review the ‘Motion to Suppress’ prior to the hearing, which is expected of a detective as part of their duties,” the IA document states. “He also did not alert ASA (Assistant State Attorney) (Stephanie) Bendeck of the tipster’s identity while seated next to her.”

The results of the investigations will be sent to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission, interim Police Chief Dave Newlan stated previously.

The Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission is the body that certifies police officers in Florida. Moral character violations, such as lying or perjury, can be grounds for de-certification.

“We have been in contact with FDLE and are putting together an IA packet to send to them, along with whatever requisite forms FDLE requires,” CCPD spokesman Sgt. Dana Coston said on Thursday.

“CJSTC could very well decertify McKissack,” he added.

Another option could be a temporary suspension of his certification.

“I do not know if the CJSTC has had a hearing yet,” Coston said. “The hearings are on a set schedule at various locations around the state several times a year.”

McKissack could not be reached for comment.