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Police report reveals new details of White Pigeon officer arrest

Updated: Saturday, August 3, 2013 |
Police report reveals new details of White Pigeon officer arrest story image
WHITE PIGEON, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - A police report obtained by Newschannel Three reveals new details on the arrest of a White Pigeon police officer last month.  We now know the White Pigeon Police Chief was riding in the car alongside that officer -- and he was drunk, too.

The I-team has been on top of the story since we broke it last month and we also know both men remain on the job, patrolling the streets.

Dash cam video shows the scene when MSP troopers found Sergeant William Burgoyne and Chief Lynn Baker were both in a car that went off the road and rolled over near Coldwater last month.

Police documents say both men refused to answer any questions on scene, take a breath test or field sobriety test and would not admit who was behind the wheel.  State troopers also say there was a strong smell of alcohol.

But to the surprise of some people in town, both are still on the job.

"They ought to receive the same treatment as everyone else that that breaks the law they should be punished.  They're supposed to set an example, they are law enforcement,” says Randy Terry who is from White Pigeon.

Both men had blood alcohol levels of .13, but just Burgoyne as the driver was arrested.

"Police officers are members of society as well and we have the same foibles and issues as society as a whole," says Fred Timpner, the director of the Michigan Association of Police.

Timpner’s union does not represent the White Pigeon officers but he told us for Burgoyne in particular to continue working is unusual.

"I've never seen it and I've been doing this since 1971, so pretty rare I would say," says Timpner.

He says in the cases where he has represented officers accused of drunk driving they are suspended without pay until a resolution in court.

Newschannel Three again on Thursday went to the police station to talk to Chief Baker, but were turned away and have never heard back.

The White Pigeon city attorney would only tell us he planned to meet with city trustees to decide what the next step would be in dealing with the chief and sergeant.

Trustees we reached by phone also had no comment.
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