A Few Comments About That Alleged DPD Sex Scandal

I read with interest this Channel 8 story about the alleged sex scandal at the Dallas Police Department. A few observations, if I may.

1. Congratulations, Channel 8. You now have the worst website of any media outlet in the city. Remember when Central Track used to scroll sideways? Your website is even worse than that.

2. The alleged trysters in question are Senior Corporal Greg Lowe and Senior Corporal Vikki Hodge Lawson. A cop told Channel 8 that the officer who filed the complaint “walked in and saw them completely in the act of sexual conduct.” I’m going to need more specificity. Speaking strictly as a journalist.

3. All of this is alleged, of course. We don’t yet know if this act of sexual conduct took place or did not take place. But looking at the pictures of Senior Corporal Greg Lowe and Senior Corporal Vikki Hodge, I hereby allege that Senior Corporal Vikki Hodge could do better.

4. The last sentence of Channel 8’s story threw me for a loop: “News 8 has learned the officer who made the allegations has a spotless internal affairs record and, according to those who know him, is a strong man of faith whom decided he had to come forward.” Forget the errant objective case “whom.” No, I’m more curious about this “strong man of faith” thing. What is that? An Orthodox Jew who can bend steel bars and burst a hot-water bottle with only the power of his lungs? If the officer who made the allegations had a spotless internal affairs record but was a staunch atheist, would that matter?

Anyway, just a couple of thoughts while we’re waiting for the Rangers game to start.


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  • tested123

    I was extremely disappointed in this story and in channel 8. Rebecca Lopez is a fine reporter, but this seemed like an incomplete story from the get go. Let me break down what’s wrong with it sentence by sentence:

    The story starts off saying the accused male officer makes a
    lot of money to sit at the front desk at the headquarters. Is that really all he does? Please explain? Also, given the shoot ’em up that took place there earlier this year one might reasonably argue such a person should be paid well.

    He earned $53,000 in overtime. Is that a lot for a police officer? I honestly don’t know. What’s his base salary? How did he get so much overtime? There’s an implication here of wrongdoing without good explanation before we even get to the part about him supposedly having sex with a fellow officer.

    This whole story is based on someone filing a complaint with
    IAD saying he saw this officer having sex with another officer. Is there any other proof or other witnesses? Then we are told an officer close to the
    investigation spoke to channel 8 detailing what this other officer supposedly
    saw. So we’re not hearing from the complainant himself, this is now second hand information.

    Mr. Second-hand-information says the officer saw the two “completely
    in the act of sexual conduct.” That right there is a mouthful of possible
    meanings. (no pun intended) Then Mr. Second-hand-information says the officer who reported the “crime” feared retaliation. Two huge problems here: One, why did he fear retaliation? Two, even if these two had sex at HQ, please explain what crime was committed? I would think lewd behavior, but this story doesn’t say that.

    So now channel 8 introduces us to another person to speak on behalf of this fearful officer, possibly trying to explain the retaliation comment. It’s the head of the FOP saying the officer struggled with whether or not to report it because the accused male officer is best friends with Chief Brown. The chief worked with the accused male officer on the SWAT team. Okay, so right here they are saying the complainant feared retaliation from the Chief, but they never once explain why other than the chief is friends with this accused officer. Is there a pattern of retaliation by chief Brown that we’re not being told about in this story? What in
    specific has the chief done that would make officers feel that way? I really want to know more. On top of the chief’s friendship with the accused male officer, the female officer is on the board of the black police association a group that supports the chief. Okay, fine, but what difference does that make? Is there some indication the chief covers for people on the board of organizations that support him? It’s not stated in this story. It’s just a vague hint that such a thing
    might be true. That’s what makes the next line so troubling: Mr. Second-hand information says “It’s pretty clear, if someone comes forward, they may stand to suffer retaliation from the Dallas Police Department.” No. It
    is not clear at all. Please tell me where the proof of retaliation is in this
    story? The next line might try to explain that when it says officers have complained that the female officer spends hours a day chatting with the male officer at the front desk. Did the officers who complained about the
    supposed flirting get fired, demoted or punished in some way? It may well be that these two are getting away with not doing the jobs we’re paying them to do, but so far we’re only led to believe that might be true based on unnamed sources. We certainly aren’t hearing about retaliation
    from the DPD or the chief.

    Then we get a brief comment from an attorney for the accused officers denying they did anything wrong.

    Finally, channel 8 tries to get chief’s side saying he “declined to comment” saying he can’t discuss internal affairs investigations. No
    kidding. Ya think? There’s the worst part of all of this, the chief’s name has been dragged into this and he cannot say anything about it. One final plug to
    boost channel 8’s story is the rather odd mention that the accuser has a
    spotless record and people who know him say he’s a strong man of faith who
    decided he had to come forward. Again, all vague second hand information with little explanation. Channel 8 never really discusses the elephant in the room on this story: the fact the DPA and the FOP (among others) want the chief to be fired. They should have discussed it because when the local and national police groups came out last week calling for Brown to go, they keyed on Brown’s management style and said he promoted friends and retaliated against officers who spoke out. They didn’t elaborate on these allegations. Perhaps that is what channel 8 is trying to get at in this story. If so, they needed
    to make that link clear in their story to give the average viewer the full
    context of this story.

    We need better journalism than that in this city – particularly when it comes to an issue of how our police department is run.

    • Amy S

      Either the overtime was approved by somebody, or they’ve got a giant hole in their payroll oversight. Overtime can range from working a holiday (typically double time) to working over a 40 hour week (time and a half). And assuming this is a union job, it is worked out in the negotiation between the union and the city. So it does seem that to include that as a relevant statement about the officer’s conduct is to make it seem shameful?

  • jfpo

    The channel 8 site is horrible, as are most media sites these days, particularly on mobile. Don’t ever change, D.

    • Happy Bennett

      Yeah D please continue to give us more “refined” bad information….. (lol)

  • Bethany
  • NealK

    Yes, the Channel 8 site is terrible, though slightly less so if you use an ad blocker.