WIS questions still largely unanswered in "Black Ops" investigat - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina

WIS questions still largely unanswered in "Black Ops" investigation

Interim Police Chief Ruben Santiago and former Columbia Police Captain Dave Navarro Interim Police Chief Ruben Santiago and former Columbia Police Captain Dave Navarro
COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) -

As soon as we finished our initial reports into the alleged "Black Ops" claims made by former police captain Dave Navarro, we started fact-checking the stories provided to us by Navarro and the city.

To do so we filed multiple Freedom of Information Act requests, most of which we're still waiting for, as of this report.

In July, Navarro alleged Interim Police Chief Ruben Santiago was setting up a plan to plant drugs and a stolen weapon inside Assistant City Manager Allison Baker's car.

Santiago has since denied the allegations. The city fired Navarro, citing insubordination, including resisting change and spreading rumors, the unauthorized recording of a phone conversation between Navarro and Santiago, and shredding unknown documents.

Navarro told us his reasons for coming forward when he did was he was afraid the city was planning to smear his name after he reported his "Black Ops" story to state investigators.

Navarro told us he called City Manager Teresa Wilson the day before Santiago suspended him.

Records we received detailing Wilson's cell phone activity prove Navarro did place a call to the city manager the night before.

The city also says Navarro secretly recorded a phone call with Santiago.

We filed a request asking for that call, but the city would not turn the recording over, claiming it was under investigation.

We challenged the city on their response and the city told us they had already turned the recording over to the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED).

We filed a request for the call with SLED, but the agency would not turn the recording over, claiming it was part of an investigation.

We have not yet seen or heard this recording the city claims to have.

We also asked the Columbia Police Department and SLED how they got their hands on the recording, but neither would answer that question. 

SLED continues investigating Navarro's allegations against Santiago. Both have filed lawsuits against one another.

Copyright 2013 WIS. All rights reserved.

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