JSO officer, Marcus Kilpatrick, has entered a plea to the criminal charge of culpable negligence following the accident he caused which killed a man. He was placed on probation in Jacksonville to perform community service hours.
Kilpatrick was originally arrested in Jacksonville for falsely reporting to law enforcement. Witnesses at the scene of the accident say Kilpatrick did not have his lights on when he was traveling at a high rate of speed that led to the accident. Witnesses say he turned on his lights after the wreck and told the Florida Highway Patrol that his lights were on the whole time.
In his criminal case, the state attorney’s office listed 20 category A witnesses. Category A witnesses are people who have direct knowledge and evidence in the case. Only one of these “A” witnesses was a JSO officer. All the others are citizens and Florida Highway Patrol. The state attorney’s office decided to drop the charge of lying to law enforcement and instead opted to pursue culpable negligence for him not having his lights on while going so fast pursuing someone for window tint.
In Jacksonville, JSO officers have been convicted of murder, rape, and theft, but never for lying. In this case, Kilpatrick almost assuredly lied and it is amazing that he was not prosecuted. As Jacksonville Criminal Defense Attorneys, we have our clients prosecuted by the same office with less evidence. If Kilpatrick was not a police officer at the time of this vehicular homicide, the results may have been different. Police officers should be held to the same standard, if not a higher one, as the rest of the public. Officers have the discretion to take away liberty and life and there should be no question about their integrity and honesty.
Kilpatrick is still employed as a JSO officer for now.