An off-duty Lawrence police officer was uninjured but was arrested shortly after midnight Saturday after allegedly crashing into a parked vehicle.
Detective Adam Welch, 38, was driving his personal vehicle Saturday when he allegedly struck a parked car in the 1500 block of Lindenwood Lane, according to a news release from LPD. The parked car “sustained obvious damage,” according to the release, but no people were injured.
“The responding officer immediately recognized the driver as off-duty detective Adam Welch, who was driving his personal vehicle,” according to the release. “The officer alerted supervision, who asked for an on-duty Kansas Highway Patrol Trooper to respond but one was not available. Supervisors called in Douglas County Deputies.”
Deputies believed Welch was operating his vehicle while impaired, and he was booked into the Douglas County jail around 1:45 a.m. He bonded out around 4:30 a.m. on a $250 bond. The jail’s booking log indicates he’ll have a court appearance on Sept. 16.
“Per protocol, the detective was immediately placed on paid administrative leave pending internal investigation by the Office of Professional Accountability and the Chief of Police,” the release stated.
LPD Chief Rich Lockhart issued this statement:
“I am personally saddened. Anyone who knows me knows I am openly emotional about the professionals in this department, the community we serve, and the law enforcement industry in general. It’s not good news. However, I have promised this community transparency, which is why I instructed the proactive release of this information. At the same time, I am again very proud of our responding officers and supervisors, who immediately recognized we should not be investigating this incident and called an outside agency. That is exactly how a situation like this should be handled. As an off-duty incident and employment matter, we will respect the individual’s privacy but understand the public’s interest and will release relevant information as decisions are made.”
LPD will not be involved in the criminal investigation.
Welch has been an employee of the Lawrence Police Department since 2007, city records indicate. He was promoted to detective in 2020, according to LPD’s annual report from that year.
All arrestees and defendants in criminal cases should be presumed not guilty unless and until they are convicted.