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City officials in Columbia have confirmed that a police lieutenant was placed on administrative leave amid an investigation into his social media posts.


Meiying Wu

  The City of Columbia’s 2017 Citizen Survey results revealed that citizens’ satisfaction with quality of police services decreased in the past year.

Only 47 percent of citizens indicated they were satisfied with police response times and efforts to prevent crimes.


Dale Roberts is the executive director of the Columbia Police Officers’ Association. He said he was not at all surprised by the results.

“We’re not embarrassed by that number,” Roberts said. “We don’t feel like we got a bad grade. It actually supports what we’ve been saying all along, which is that we need more officers.”

File / KBIA

Columbia Police are looking to re-engage with residents in a series of rebranded public meetings named “Building Stronger Beats.”

Each of the four meetings is in a police beat area and will feature a beat commander presenting crime data before taking questions from interested residents.

These meetings replace the Police Department’s Town Hall meetings, which are held twice a year. The most recent was this spring.

Local Agencies Will Simulate Active Shooter Situation

Nov 18, 2016
Columbia Police
KOMUnews / Flickr

The Boone County Office of Emergency Management will hold a simulated active shooter response exercise, on Monday November 21. The first exercise will be at the University of Missouri campus in Laws Hall from 2 to 4 p.m. The second will be at Southern Boone Elementary school in Ashland from 6 to 8 p.m.

Each exercise will incorporate sounds of gunfire, over 100 local emergency responders and 30 volunteers acting as real victims. Some volunteers will be wearing make-up, simulating actual injuries.

University of Missouri Department of Communication

Interim MU Chancellor Hank Foley released statements on Sunday addressing the police body camera video of faculty member Melissa Click in confrontation with police at the MU Homecoming Parade, after a demonstration by the group Concerned Student 1950. He plans to address the video with the UM Board of Curators.

KOMU-TV reports that traffic was backed up Monday morning on westbound I-70 after thousands of nails spilled along the highway in Columbia, creating a possible hazard.

Columbia police estimated that about 200 boxes of nails spilled, and each box contained about 2,000 nails. Police were still looking for the truck that spilled the nails.

Officials said the line of backed up traffic extended several miles, but the area was cleared and traffic was moving by mid-morning.

sasha menu courey
MU file photo

Police in Columbia say they've failed to identify a suspect in a case involving a former University of Missouri swimmer who said she was raped by several football players, months before she committed suicide. 

Youth cleaning graffiti
File Photo / KBIA

A recent spur in graffiti incidents throughout downtown Columbia has groups throughout the city working together to find a solution.

Columbia Police
KOMUnews / Flickr

Two bills to further protect on duty officers are currently awaiting Gov. Jay Nixon's signature.  The Columbia Police Officers' Association has supported legislation that would make it a felony to disarm a law enforcement agent of any weapon, not simply their handgun. 

Apartment complex cooperates with police

Oct 17, 2013
aspen heights

Recent incidents involving robbery, gun fire, and large parties at Aspen Heights housing complex have encouraged the Columbia police department to step in. Columbia Police Sgt. Joe Bernhard says the beat sergeants and the sector lieutenant are now working with Aspen Heights management to improve safety and security. He says the management has been requesting a courtesy officer, or off duty police officer, on site to look over things.

“I think it’s just small things that need to happen and have to set expectations for the tenants and enforce the rules,” Bernhard says.

Columbia Police say they are investigating a homicide at the Harry S. Truman Memorial Veterans' Hospital in Columbia that happened on Friday. In a press release, police say the suspect and victim were both patients at the VA Hospital, and that the suspect is currently in custody. Police aren’t releasing any other information right now.

Ferguson family starts billboard campaign

Nov 26, 2012
Maoling Xiong / KBIA

Ryan Ferguson’s family started a billboard campaign Monday, encouraging the public to provide information about a composite image of a man possibly linked to the 2001 murder of Columbia Tribune editor Kent Heitholt.


The Columbia Police began the ‘Columbia Cease fire Initiative’ on Wednesday which compiles the names and photographs of individuals and close associates suspected of being involved with several shootings over the last four months.

The Columbia Police Department says an internal investigation confirmed that people were served drinks off the bare breasts of women at a Columbia Police Officers Association/FOP Lodge 26 golf tournament.

A man died after jumping off the parking garage at 5th and Walnut in Columbia Thursday morning.

Columbia Police and union officials are looking into claims that topless waitresses participated in a recent union fundraiser.

Newscast for Friday, June 22, 2012

Jun 22, 2012
Lorri Auer / Flickr

Regional news coverage from the KBIA newsroom, including:

  • Nixon to address 2013 budget
  • Columbia Police release internal complaint numbers
  • Yahweh's Restoration Ministry to broadcast on national television

Columbia Police release internal complaint numbers

Jun 22, 2012
Lorri Auer / Flickr

The Columbia Police Department is moving toward more transparency in dealing with internal complaints within the department. Earlier this month police voluntarily released a list of internal complaints against officers for the past year -- the first time they've done so. 

Three Columbia schools were on modified lockdown for about an hour Thursday afternoon.

The Missouri Court of Appeals has upheld the murder conviction of Steven Rios - a former Columbia police officer - in the 2004 killing of a college student Rios was in a relationship with.

Rios was convicted in 2009 of second-degree murder for the death of Jesse Valencia, a 23-year-old University of Missouri student.

Rios is serving a life sentence.

Police discuss heroin increase

May 25, 2012
Lukas Udstuen / KBIA

Columbia Police started seeing an increase in the number of heroin-related arrests and overdoses beginning about six months ago. Heroin is now the number-one drug the department investigates. Last night police held a town-hall meeting to inform residents about the growing threat.

Regional news coverage from the KBIA newscast, including:

  • The announcement that the University of Missouri Press is closing
  • "FASTCAT" is the new bus line in Columbia that will run between the MU campus and downtown Columbia
  • The Columbia Fraternal Order of Police continues to call for the removal of Chief Ken Burton
  • The Missouri Council of the blind wants a Columbia chapter

FOP still pushing for removal of Chief Burton

May 24, 2012
KBIA file photo

Columbia Police policies have changed but a police union is still calling for bolder action.

Missouri quarterback Corbin Berkstresser was arrested Tuesday morning for leaving the scene of an accident.

MoDOT to crack down on youth impaired driving

May 3, 2012
KOMU / Flickr

The Missouri Department of Transportation is cracking down on youth impaired driving.

Regional news coverage from the KBIA newsroom, including:

  • A lawsuit between southeast Missouri farmers and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
  • A battery acid leak affecting Columbia Police Department and Joint Operations
  • Missouri Gaming Commission new rule regarding casino exclusion list
  • More corn planted this year since end of Great Depression
  • State Auditor Schweich releases report about misuse of federal funds

Newscast for March 21, 2012

Mar 21, 2012
File / KBIA

Regional news coverage from the KBIA News room, I'm Scott Kanowsky:

  • Missouri legislators wrangle with state budget.
  • Columbia Police will step up security during spring break.
  • Missouri Senate considers a bill putting more security cameras in the state capitol.

Regional news coverage from the KBIA Newsroom, including:

  • The status of the Missouri budget.
  • What the Columbia Police Department is doing to prepare for Spring Break burglaries.
  • A Missouri law that would push tougher penalties on hunters who accidentally kill someone.

Regional news coverage from the KBIA Newsroom, including:

  • Joplin looking for weather radios
  • New video camera for Columbia Police
  • True/False Film Festival chooses its lead documentary
  • Politicians to meet in Columbia to discuss flooding issues