Seized Items to be Returned to Newspaper

All the items seized in a raid of the newspaper in Marion will be returned.

Law enforcement executed a search warrant Friday at the newspaper office of the Marion Record and at the owner / publisher’s home, seizing records and equipment from the newspaper’s reporters and the publisher. Four Marion police officers and three sheriff’s deputies seized personal cell phones and computers, including the newspaper’s file server.

According to the Marion County Attorney’s Office, they have come to the conclusion that insufficient evidence exists to establish a legally sufficient nexus between the alleged crime of identity theft and the places searched and the items seized.  As a result, they have submitted a proposed order asking the court to release the evidence seized. They have asked local law enforcement to return the material seized to the owners of the property.

This matter will remain under review until such time as the Kansas Bureau of Investigation, the agency now in charge of the investigation, may submit any findings to this office for a charging decision. At such time, a determination will be made as to whether sufficient evidence exists under the applicable rules and standards to support a charge for any offense.

The KBI says at present time this investigation remains open, however, they have determined in collaboration with the Marion County Attorney, that the investigation will proceed independently, and without review or examination of any of the evidence seized on Friday. They will work with the Marion County Record, or their representative, to coordinate the prompt return of all seized items.

Once their investigation concludes they will present findings to the Marion County Attorney for review.

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Photo via KSN News