MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Shelby County District Attorney Amy Weirich told FOX13 that Eric Kelly will not be facing any criminal charges after he admitted having sexual contact with a murder defendant while he was an MPD Police Officer.
Weirich said just because a violation of policy or procedure happened within the police department doesn’t mean there was a violation of state law.
Some charges the DA’s office looked into include prostitution, coercion of a witness, sexual contact with a parolee, sexual contact with inmates, misuse of official information, official oppression, and official misconduct.
But Weirich said after analyzing the facts, her office found Kelly did not break any current Tennessee laws. She said it’s not the DA’s job to create new laws, but simply to enforce current legislation.
“At this time, with the facts as we know them today, with the evidence that we have before us today, there are no state criminal laws that Eric Kelly’s conduct violates,” Weirich said.
Coincidentally, the DA’s office has been working on a new initiative to deal with officer’s cases just like this one.
The new unit has been in the works for months, but in light of the Eric Kelly allegations, the DA’s office told FOX13 they wanted to share details of the new unit, which doesn’t yet have an official name.
Weirich said one prosecutor will be tasked with conducting an in-depth review of any and all closed or pending cases involving officers whose conduct has been found to violate department policies, state law, or federal law. The office plans to begin by reviewing all pending and closed cases that Eric Kelly was involved with, but that’s just where the work begins.
“We will go back as far as we need to. I think sometimes in these situations, once you start pulling on the ball of string, it may go back a while. But we are going to start with the list that we have and work our way back for those cases,” Weirich said.
FOX13 Investigates will continue asking questions regarding the potential fall-out of cases Kelly has been involved with.
The District Attorney’s office is creating a new special unit to review pending and old cases that Kelly was involved in. After prosecutors get through Kelly’s cases, they’ll begin moving through other officers cases that need reviewed for similar reasons.
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