Let go repeatedly, alleged cop shooter's criminal past sparks questions

Let go repeatedly, alleged cop shooter's criminal past sparks questions

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A man accused of shooting an LMPD officer should have been in jail on a warrant instead of on the streets.

Despite that, WAVE 3 News has uncovered how the courts let him go time after time.

Jacquan Crowley, 22, is charged with shooting officer Kyle Carroll in June, but his history with police began well before then.

The Department of Corrections provided Crowley's mugshots from 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2016. Some of his charges include possession of a controlled substance, trafficking in marijuana, carrying a concealed deadly weapon, tampering with physical evidence and third-degree assault of a police officer. He was also charged with fleeing or evading police nine times. But Crowley was still able to roam the streets.

"It should be shocking to the public," Dave Mutchler, the president of the Fraternal Order of Police, told WAVE 3 News. "It's an unbelievably ridiculous revolving door."

Mutchler said he's familiar with Crowley's past.

"You've got all the warnings here but nobody's heeding them," he said. One officer drew stars on an arrest report and called Crowley a "known armed police fighter and gang member," and that was three years before Crowley allegedly shot Carroll.

"Our members are asking, 'Who is going to stop this?'" Mutchler said.

"You've got all the warnings here but nobody's heading them," Mutchler said.

Warnings like we found on a police report where an officer drew stars around a note calling Crowley a "known armed police fighter and gang member." That report was just three years before he'd be accused of shooting Officer Kyle Carroll.

"Our members are asking who is going to stop this?" Mutchler said.  

According to court records, several of Crowley's charges were dismissed or merged with others.

In 2013 he was sentenced to 10 years in prison for fleeing or evading and 3rd degree assault on an officer. But he only served nine months of that, according to Department of Corrections, because prosecutors eventually agreed to a plea deal. He was released on 5 years probation.

Not long after, Crowley was arrested again. The charges that time were for the possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, possession of a controlled substance and for fleeing or evading police. Again, he engaged in another plea deal with prosecutors, promising to serve 180 days in order to then ask for shock probation.

Crowley also wrote a letter to Judge Olu Stevens saying he was "tired" and "drained."

In February 2016, Judge Stevens, who's now suspended due to a separate issue, granted Crowley's request as part of the plea deal.

"You're telling me you've been shocked by your experience," Stevens told Crowley during the hearing. "I'm giving you this opportunity in a summary fashion, but don't let it be lost on you, OK?"

"You know the best predictor of future behavior is past behavior," University of Louisville Criminal Justice Associate Professor Dr. Kristin Swartz said. She also said not all offenders continue a destructive pattern.

"About five to 10 percent of all offenders commit the majority of crimes."

Mutchler worries even that small percentage could have a deadly impact, if they're allowed back on the street.

"By way of doing that the murder rate in Louisville is not going to go down, the robbery rate is not going to go down, and the hundreds of shootings are not going to go down," Mutchler said.

Crowley is currently being held at the Roederer Correctional Complex in LaGrange. He is serving that 10 year sentence he obtained in 2013 after violating probation. According to the Department of Corrections, he is expected to serve time until March 19, 2023. While serving that time, Crowley also awaits trial on the charges of attempted murder of a police officer, possession of a handgun by a convicted felon, fleeing or evading police and persistent felony offender.

For this story, we reached out to Crowley's attorney and the prosecutor's office who declined to comment. We also reached out to Judge Stevens who did not respond.

Local activist Chanelle Helm said she believes Crowley was being harassed by police and that his case supports the idea that police can "coerce any situation."

Copyright 2016 WAVE 3 News. All rights reserved.