What you need to know about today’s press conference

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We didn’t learn much today from Chief of Police Steve Settingsgaard and State’s Attorney Jerry Brady that wasn’t already known about last week’s Twitter raid. I’ll provide you with a few highlights to spare you from having to listen to my hour-long recording of the presser.

  1. Journal Star court reporter (he also does has like five other beats) Andy Kravetz absolutely grilled Settingsgaard about the public backlash to the raid, and vitriolic critiques of the police chief in particular. Here’s the exchange:

Kravetz: “There’s a whole group of folks out there who think that you guys suck — all because of this. There are people — I’m reading comments now — who think that you are jack-booted thugs and went way overboard on this, and who (think) you guys would never go through all this work for me, them, whomever. What do you say to the average person out there who thinks that that you guys are a bunch of thugs?”

Settingsgaard: “I might say that if someone has the opinion I’m a jack-booted thug that allegation is so outlandish they should understand that’s parody. People that know me know I’m not.”

  1. Jake Elliott’s pot possession charge is technically still pending. There was no movement on this. Prior to making his statement, Settingsgaard told the press he would not be discussing the marijuana possession because of the pending nature of that charge and investigation.

  2. I asked Settingsgaard: “Regardless of the interpretation of the statute, was this an effective use of police resources for this level of crime?” His response: “I think we had an obligation to investigate it. And I couldn’t have investigated it completely and thoroughly with less resources than what I used. I’ll tell you another thing, I was surprised, I was pleasantly surprised, to learn there were only four officers at the house for the search warrant. Typically there are more officers than that.”

  3. Journal Star crime reporter Matt Buedel repeatedly asked both Brady and Settingsgaard whether it is standard operating procedure for the State’s Attorney’s Office to consult with police when crafting search warrants for misdemeanor crimes. Ardis and the police chief intimated Tuesday night that Brady’s office was heavily involved in the crafting of three warrants to find the person behind the account. Today, Brady largely side-stepped Buedel’s queries. But he did say that his office has consulted with police when crafting search warrants for marijuana misdemeanors, because higher level drug charges sometimes result from those raids.

  4. Speaking of raids, Settingsgaard has a problem with that term. The execution of the search warrant last week was not handled in the same way police go after more serious offenders, he said. The entire situation, according to Settingsgaard, was handled exactly how he would have like it to be had his “son been involved.”