Post updated at 4:34 p.m. Monday, Oct. 24:
A Lawrence police detective is set to be arraigned in December in a DUI case.
Adam C. Welch, 38, was driving his personal vehicle on Sept. 3 when he allegedly struck a parked vehicle in the 1500 block of Lindenwood Lane, according to a news release from LPD. The parked vehicle “sustained obvious damage,” according to the release, but no people were injured.
Responding Douglas County Sheriff’s Office deputies believed Welch was operating his vehicle while impaired, and he was booked into the jail, according to the Lawrence Police Department. Welch was placed on paid administrative leave pending an internal investigation, LPD said at the time.
Laura McCabe, a spokesperson for LPD, said via email Monday afternoon that Welch has returned to duty “and we’re working with him with hopes he remains a valuable member of the department.”
According to the DGSO crash report, Welch was southbound on Lindenwood Lane in a Nissan Maxima and struck a Ford Fusion parked on the east side of the street. Both vehicles were towed from the scene.
“Welch had requested an attorney prior to my arrival and I wasn’t able to (ask) him any questions,” the master deputy who investigated wrote in the crash report.
The report states that Welch refused an impairment test, but investigators believed that alcohol was a contributing factor and test results were pending at the time the report was completed.
Cheryl Cadue, spokesperson for the Douglas County district attorney’s office, said DA Suzanne Valdez had sought an outside prosecutor to review the case “to avoid any perception of a conflict of interest.”
“We referred this matter to a special prosecutor for charging consideration, so this office is not directly involved in that process,” she said via email Monday morning.
Karen Cudlin Wittman, a special prosecutor who works in the Wyandotte County DA’s office, filed the charge against Welch last week. It alleges that Welch operated a vehicle while above the legal blood alcohol concentration limit of .08, a class B misdemeanor.
Regarding whether the DA’s office is concerned about prosecuting cases Welch investigated, Cadue said “This office will continue to comply with our Brady/Giglio disclosure obligations under our published policy with respect to all law enforcement witnesses in pending cases.”
Welch is set for arraignment on Friday, Dec. 2. Online court records did not list an attorney representing him as of Monday morning.
All arrestees and defendants in criminal cases should be presumed not guilty unless and until they are convicted.