Huntsville City Council addresses email concerns of sexual misconduct within police department

Updated: Jun. 12, 2020 at 6:24 PM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Startling allegations made Thursday night during Huntsville's City Council meeting.

Councilman Bill Kling said he has received multiple sexual misconduct allegations against Huntsville police officers and other council members have received the same emails.

48 News spent the afternoon digging into the allegations. We found these emails are a chain email about a former case in New York City and not here locally.

Nowhere in the email is it accusing Huntsville police officers of sexual misconduct. Rather the author of the viral email is asking for states to reform a law around the country.

We spoke with Kling who said he is confident there is no such allegations happening in Huntsville but brought it up last night to end online rumors.

Former Huntsville city police officer and current District Five City Councilman Will Culver apologized for insensitive comments made during Thursday night’s City Council meeting.

“I mean, I am single I might go back and become a police officer,” said Culver. The comment made was in reference to an email circulating across the country regarding police officers having sex with people in custody.

“The comments I made were totally unorthodox and I am going to apologize again publicly. That is not what I meant,” said Culver. “One of the most heinous crimes that could ever be committed is being forced to have sexual relations, or having sexual relations without consent, or being raped.”

Last week those emails were sent to Huntsville City Council members. “There is concern out there, that people arrested by the Huntsville Police officers have to worry about the officers having sex with them,” said Bill Kling.

But Kling said he does not believe those allegations and wanted to put the rumors to rest that is why he addressed it publicly in Thursday night’s meeting. He shared one of the emails with 48 News. The email encourages the recipient to sign a petition to change state law. The petition says Alabama is one of more than 30 states that have not specifically outlawed cops from engaging in sexual activity with people in police custody.

Huntsville’s top cop, Chief Mark McMurray, denied any sexual misconduct accusations against his officers. He credits mandatory body camera footage to be rolling at all times during intake. “We record every second. If a complaint was ever made, we would know about it and we would know the truth on what really happened,” said the chief.

Council President Devyn Keith has requested the chief to come back next week with a formal statement explaining the emails and allegations.

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