To the editor:
I wonder what would happen if I walked into the Leavenworth County Sheriff’s Office and asked to see its records for the Mitchell case. After informing the clerk that poor John Mitchell was murdered 100 years ago this month southwest of Leavenworth while returning home in his horse-drawn wagon after calling on his bride-to-be and that the killer was never positively identified, would she then have the audacity to tell me, “Sir, this is still an active investigation and we can’t release any of our records to you?”
The Sheriff’s Office has had 100 years to solve the Mitchell case and it hasn’t been solved yet.
Clara Hebling had to hire a private investigator to look into the slaying of her husband-to-be because the Sheriff’s Office didn’t get the job done back in 1919 and went to her grave in 1960 not knowing who had fired the shots that killed him just days before their planned wedding.
So are Harold and Alberta Leach likewise going to have to go to their graves not knowing what happened to their son Randy 31 years ago because the Sheriff’s Office failed to get the job done and Kansas’ flawed Open Records Act continues to allow law enforcement agencies and the judicial system to operate largely in the dark with little or no accountability to anyone? I ask because inquiring minds and sympathizing hearts want to know.