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Attorney: Marion police downloaded, kept copy of raided Kansas newspaper's computers

Marion Police Raid.png
Posted at 12:38 PM, Aug 24, 2023
and last updated 2023-08-25 07:47:27-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — During a raid earlier this month on the Marion County Record newspaper, law enforcement copied computers to a hard drive and kept the data, according to the newspaper's attorney, Bernie Rhodes.

Rhodes said the inventory list provided to him by law enforcement did not have the hard drive on it.

On Tuesday, Marion County District Court released the list of seized items it received, which showed the hard drive.

"No one has explained to me why I got one inventory list and the court got a separate one and that the inventory list I got omits the drive that we now know has never been returned to us," Rhodes told senior KSHB 41 I-Team reporter Jessica McMaster Thursday.

Rhodes said surveillance video from Marion County Record shows a sheriff's department deputy downloading the computers during the raid.

"Not giving it back is a violation of the court order that told them they had to give it back," Rhodes said.

The items were returned after Joel Ensey, Marion County attorney withdrew the warrant and ordered the items be returned. Ensey was not immediately available for comment.

This is a developing story and may be updated.