KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — The Kansas City Star and its owner, The McClatchy Company, are suing a Kansas City suburb for records related to the 2018 police killing of an Overland Park teenager.
The newspaper reported that the lawsuit filed Wednesday accuses city officials of violating the Kansas Open Records Act by refusing to release the resignation and severance agreement of former Officer Clayton Jenison.
Jenison fatally shot 17-year-old John Albers in January 2018 as the teen was backing a minivan out of his family’s garage. The officer had been called to the Albers’ family home on a welfare check on the teen, who was believed to be suicidal.
Jenison, who was cleared of criminal wrongdoing in the shooting, soon left the department and was paid $70,000 in a severance agreement. Overland Park officials have repeatedly denied the newspaper’s requests for the severance agreement, maintaining it is not an “employment-related contract or agreement” and therefore not subject to the open records law.
Overland Park City Manager Bill Ebel did not immediately return a phone message left Thursday seeking comment on the lawsuit.
The FBI confirmed last month that it has opened a civil rights investigation into the fatal shooting.