Glitch Could Compromise Computer Records in E Tennessee City

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) -- Police officials in Chattanooga are trying to get a grasp on how many initial incident reports have been lost because of the way some officers filed new ones.

Authorities say the situation became known as they investigated former patrol Officer Shawn Cunningham over allegations that he hadn't filed paperwork on 60 arrests, investigations and citations.

Cunningham was fired in July. A City Council panel upheld the termination last week.

Assistant Police Chief Mike Williams says the department decided to look at all reports and found a problem.

Williams says some officers -- rather than initiating a fresh document -- were calling up a previous report on their laptops and overwriting it.

Once the new incident report was filed, the old one used as a guide was overwritten in the system.

Williams says nearly 900 reports from this year were erased by the practice.

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Information from: Chattanooga Times Free Press, http://www.timesfreepress.com

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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