HPOU honors Officer Annette Keyes as Investigator of the Month

Tom Kennedy

Last September, Officer Annette Keyes was assigned to a case involving the inappropriate touching of an eight0year0old female by a school counselor at the KIPP Explore Academy on Lawndale on the east side.

Lt. John Colburn fully recalled the way Keyes handled the case. He read his account at the January general membership meeting in which Keyes was presented the HPOU Investigator of the Month honor.

Immediately Keyes conducted a forensic interview with the victim at the Children’s Assessment Center and learned the victimization began when she was in the second grade. The officer promptly went to the school and interviewed the alleged suspect, also speaking with witnesses and taking photographs of the scene.

“Officer Keyes’ hard work and attention to detail in the high-profile investigation allowed for the suspect to be charged on Oct. 12, just 16 days after she had received the case for investigation.”

The officer persevered. She conducted further interviews and learned enough further details to document other victims with similar allegations against the suspect counselor. Each victim was of elementary school age.

On Oct. 23, school officials held a parent meeting to address parental concerns surrounding the allegations. “Officer Keyes volunteered to attend the meeting outside of her normal duty hours so that she could help educate the attendees at the meeting and offer any assistance to the community,” Lt. Colburn explained.

Eventually Keyes identified a total of 11 victims abused by the suspect, all of them involving elementary school students. Her investigation resulted in three indecency with a child charges against the suspected child predator.