... you'd think he would lose his job. After all, is it too much to ask that police officers comply with the laws they are sworn to enforce? It's bad enough that Michigan state troopers gratuitously bust the speed limits on our highways while on patrol, we now learn from this evening's Grand Rapids Press that a trooper now can be convicted of drunken driving, filing a false police report, and other offenses and still keep his badge.
Twelve years ago Trooper David Meder was convicted of drunken driving after crashing his truck on the way home from a state police meeting. His blood alcohol level was twice the legal limit. Nevertheless he was transferred to a new post in Traverse City, keeping his badge and his job as a highway patrolman. Earlier this year, Meder left a Traverse City bar, apparently drunk, in his Chevy Suburban and then plowed it into a utility pole. He fled the scene and on the next day reported to the police that his vehicle had been stolen.
The investigation revealed that Meder had lied, and so he pled guilty to a couple of misdemeanors related to the accident. However, he didn't get nabbed for drunken driving, because the only evidence of his intoxication was a statement by a bartender that Meder appeared drunk when he left the bar. Of course, because he ran away from the crash and hid out at home until the next morning, there was no chance of the police getting a timely blood test from him. But then, Meder is a cop and knows better than John Q. Public what his responsibilities are at the scene of an accident he caused. Even if evading those responsibilities allowed him to escape a drunken driving charge, surely that means a two-time loser like him lost his job as trooper, right?
Well, no. Apparently his gross violation of his oath to uphold the law is no big deal with the Michigan State Police. They have transferred Meder to a post in South Haven where he has been assigned, incredibly, road patrol duty. The poor excuse that the top cop shop has given for not firing Meder is that he is protected by his union and can be terminated in only "very, very, very extreme circumstances". Like what? Killing someone while driving drunk?
This is an Alice-in-Wonderland world, folks. How is it that a twice-convicted cop has a greater claim on the public purse than the public has on him to conduct himself lawfully and honorably?