Official who OK’d Longmont searches longer works for agency
LONGMONT, Colo. (AP) — A Longmont housing official who allowed warrantless police searches of a subsidized housing complex no longer works for the agency.
The Times-Call reports Friday that the Longmont Housing Authority won’t say if Krystal Winship Erazo was fired or resigned.
Residents of the complex alleged their apartments were searched in May without their consent and that police officers didn’t have search warrants. Erazo participated in the searches.
Residents told authorities they feared they would be evicted if they refused to allow officers into their apartments.
Michael Reis, executive director of the housing authority, confirmed Thursday that Erazo, the authority’s director of operations, no longer holds that position. He refused to say whether she resigned or was fired.
On Wednesday, the city announced that two Longmont police officers were suspended with pay after an investigation of the searches. The city also has agreed to pay more than $200,000 in a settlement with four residents of The Suites Housing Complex.
Residents’ complaints about the warrantless searches were first documented by KUSA-TV.
The November settlement between Longmont and the residents, who were represented by the American Civil Liberties Union of Colorado, required the city to take input from the ACLU on search policies and hold a public forum to address the incident.
Tenants provided the ACLU with copies of notices that described the searches as a training opportunity for dogs in the police department’s K-9 unit.
Settlement negotiations began when Longmont Public Safety Chief Mike Butler reached out and acknowledged problems with the searches, ACLU attorneys said.
Information from: Daily Times-Call, http://timescall.com/