Editorials

Dirty Michael joining ranks of felons in chief?

Former East St. Louis Police Chief Michael Floore is the third top cop from the department to face felony charges.
Former East St. Louis Police Chief Michael Floore is the third top cop from the department to face felony charges. Provided

Former East St. Louis Police Chief Michael Floore thought there was nothing wrong with claiming extra pay for MetroLink security duty when he wasn’t actually doing the work. He becomes the third former East St. Louis Police chief to face felony charges.

Maybe someone should check the water line to the coffee pot or test the doughnut glaze. Some environmental influence is obviously at play for so many of the city’s former top cops to be so corrupt.

Before Floore, former Police Chief Michael Baxton Sr. resigned in 2012 after he was caught stealing four Xbox 360 game systems from the trunk of a car in an undercover sting set up by the FBI. They were investigating corruption in neighboring Alorton, where Baxton was previously police chief. He went to prison.

And before Baxton, former Police Chief Ronald Matthews in 2005 left after he was indicted by the feds on perjury and obstruction after he took a $1,500 bribe to take a gun out of evidence and return it to the subject of a federal probe. He, too, went to prison.

The top cop creates the culture within a police department, whether that leader be a cowboy or a community liaison, a Briscoe or a Columbo, a cop’s cop or a robber’s robber. In a city with so many gangland drug murders that the per capita murder rate puts it among the nation’s most deadly places, the thin blue line or luck is all that separates most residents from chaos.

So you’ve gotta ask yourself one question: “Do I feel lucky?” Well do ya, when the chief’s a punk?

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