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Denver Police Take-Home Car Goes Too Far

Written by Brian Maass
DENVER (CBS4) – A high-ranking Denver police commander has been using a city car to commute to and from work from her home in Elizabeth, 40 miles from Denver, even though the daily commute violated a mayoral executive order, city fiscal accountability rule and directives issued by the Denver police chief, all of which prohibit “take home cars” from going to homes more than 25 miles from Denver’s City and County Building.

“That’s a rule we are all subject to,” said Lt. Matt Murray, a spokesman for the Denver Police Department. “There’s a fiscal rule that says you can’t take a car home” if you live beyond 25 miles, said Murray. “If you don’t live within that range, you can’t take a car home,” said the DPD spokesperson. “Who is exempt from that rule?,” Murray was asked. “Nobody I know of,” he responded.

“I have approval of the chief,” countered Division Chief Tracie Keesee, who is seen by many as a frontrunner to become Denver’s next police chief.

In a phone interview with CBS4, Keesee said she had been taking a city car home since 2005. She oversees the DPD’s Research, Training and Technology Division.

“It’s no surprise to the chief,” said Keesee. She declined to speak on camera with CBS4.

She lives in Elizabeth, deep in rural Elbert County, nearly an hour-long drive from her office at Denver Police Headquarters in downtown Denver. The city rules against long commutes cropped up in the early 2000s to address high gas prices and the dubious benefit of having an emergency responder live so far away in the case of an emergency.

In 2002, Mayor Wellington Webb signed an executive order addressing the city’s vehicle use policies. The order said that to be eligible for a take home car “the driver’s home is within a twenty-five (25) mile radius of the City and County Building.”

Three weeks later, Chief Gerry Whitman issued his own directive writing that, “The employee’s residence, and any personal use, must be confined to a 25-mile radius of the City and County Building.”

In 2006, the city issued a fiscal accountability rule that was updated in 2009 emphasizing take home vehicles can only be taken home if “The driver’s home is within a twenty-five (25) mile radius of the City and County Building.”

Keesee indicated Whitman verbally overrode all those rules and regulations, even though the CBS4 probe found he didn’t have the authority to do so.

In a statement to CBS4 Thursday, Denver Mayor Bill Vidal made it clear Whitman had exceeded his authority and did not have the ability to override multiple city rules and regulations.

“Chief Whitman mistakenly granted permission for Division Chief Keesee to take home her vehicle and waived the mileage requirement,” said Vidal.

The mayor’s office said that following the CBS4 probe. Keesee was ordered to cease taking her car home to Elizabeth.

“Chief Whitman has instructed Division Chief Keesee to not take home her city vehicle until the proper approval has been secured. Mayor Vidal will consider the waiver request after discussing emergency response policies with the Department of Safety.”

The mayor’s office called Whitman’s actions an “oversight and not an intentional violation … no discipline is warranted.”

Justin Demello, the former head of Denver’s Office of Emergency Management, was caught violating the 25 mile rule in 2008. Demello was using a city vehicle to commute to and from Fort Collins, about 62 miles. At the time, Demello told KUSA-TV he was unaware of the city executive order and the fiscal accountability rule outlining the 25 mile requirement. Demello resigned his position shortly after details of his unauthorized commute were reported.

Mark Leone, a former Denver police lieutenant, reviewed the evidence gathered during the CBS4 investigation and said what occurred undermines the police departments credibility and accountability.

“It in essence broadcasts to the organization that if you are one of the chosen ones — friends and family — the rules are not applicable to you. Anytime you’re involved with an organization or family or boss, that says, “Do as I say, not as I do,” all it does is permeate the organization that rules don’t apply. It’s a piece of the culture that needs to be changed,” said Leone.

Keesee’s commute is costly for Denver taxpayers. Fuel records obtained by CBS4 show that in a typical month, Keesee has to fill up her city SUV three times a week. In May, records show the division chief filled up 10 times and put more than 2,000 miles on the Lincoln Aviator. Figuring fuel costs at $4 per gallon, taxpayers spent more than $500 in a single month to fuel her commute.

Her take home vehicle is one of about 250 DPD vehicles driven home every night. Each take home car user must have a current authorization form on file to be allowed to take a vehicle home.

CBS4 requested Keesee’s take home car authorization forms on June 15. A week later, the department provided two forms for two take home vehicles Keesee has driven since June, 2010. The manager of records for the police department said authorization forms for Keesee beginning in 2005 could not be located. However both forms provided to CBS4 were dated June 15, 2011 and signed by Chief Whitman that same day. Additionally, both forms for Keesee indicated she lived beyond 25 miles from Denver, but that she lived in Parker, which is much closer to Denver than Elizabeth.

In email exchanges with CBS4, Keesee wrote that, “The forms were redone by the fleet Sgt. O’Shea, who took them to Chief Whitman for his signature. Parker was not written in by me.”

She did not offer any further explanation for why her subordinate wrote that she lived in Parker instead of Elizabeth. Keesee was asked how many times she has been called out from home for emergencies in the past year. She did not respond to that request.

The CBS4 findings echo problems pointed out by the Denver auditor in a report released in January 2011 on city take home vehicles.

“Audit work determined that requirements surrounding take-home vehicles are not being monitored, complied with, or applied consistently. The numerous problems identified by audit work regarding take-home vehicles ultimately create the perception that the city does not view managing take-home vehicle usage as a high priority.”

The audit went on to say, “That there is little oversight and monitoring over take-home vehicles.”

Ann Williams, a spokesperson for Mayor Bill Vidal, told CBS4 that the police department’s public information officer was mistaken when he said there were no exemptions to the 25 mile take home car rule.

“He made an honest mistake,” said Williams, who said the lieutenant was unaware of the deal Whitman had made with Keesee.

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One Comment

  1. Mike says:

    Bigger question is why we are paying for a Division Chief who has a desk job. Curious when was the last time she responded to a call? We are paying for her too? WOW! Looking forward to her being Chief -that’s a testiment to cleaning up the department!

  2. Casper108 says:

    Why does the Division Chief of Research, Training and Technology Division need a take home car? Not exactly a front line position that needs to respond around town for emergencies.

  3. Bob Simmons says:

    The car issue is yet another example of Division Chief Keesee’s self serving attitude. I’m told by members of the department that she was instructed as far back as 2003 that she couldn’t take her car to her house. As commander of District 5 she was again told that she had to park at the Parker fire station. Defer, deflect, dishonest..her character issues she didn’t list on her resume….the cops and the citizens deserve better.

    1. dmdouggie says:

      As a citizen, I want the new mayor to make good on his pledge to conduct a nationwide search for a new chief. A bona fide search, not just a superficial ad in a periodical, a meaningless gesture made so that he can reward his friend who worked for him on his campaign.
      I want someone who puts the department and the city first.
      Someone who will be firm but fair with regard to discipline. Not someone who is the unanimous choice of the board of the Police Protective Association because she may share their warped views.
      Someone whose judgement won’t be swayed by the fact that she’s married to a command officer on the DPD who appears to be a member of the league of misery.
      Someone who expects officers to follow the rules, and believes that those rules apply to every member, including the chief of police and has the courage to accept responsibility for her actions.

      1. Bob Simmons says:

        I’m proud of the good men and women of the Denver Police Department. The vast majority are working hard, keeping us safe and they deserve a better chief of police than Tracie Keesee. Someone who has integrity, diligence, and honesty directed towards the betterment of the community and the officers who serve – NOT a person who has consistently sacrificed these values for the purpose of self directed opportunism.

      2. get real says:


      3. get real says:

        ditto to dmdouggie not the other….i will be proud of the police department when they straighted up and fly right

  4. Number 6 says:

    Must be nice to get your gas for free courtesy of the taxpayers. By the way, why is the city issuing her a Lincoln Navigator no less?

    Did she get preferential treatment because she’s a minority female?

    1. Cleaner Cop says:

      Is she being attacked because she’s a minority female? Seriously Number 6?

      1. Number 6 says:

        Did I say attacked? NO. I think she got preferential treatment because she’s a minority female. I’ve seen that kind of nonsense happen before where I used to work, which was a federal research lab.

      2. Cleaner Cop says:

        Number 6…my question to you was satirical…some people have posted that those defending Keesee are playing the race card, while you make the ridiculous point that she received preferential treatment because of her race.

        Bottom line, all the Chiefs, including the one who leaked this story, are afforded a take home vehicle…in fact, the one who leaked this story has a business that directly conflicts with his position on the department…but again, Maass is not reporting that.

  5. Concerned says:

    Good grief, another Brian Maass story about how bad the Denver Cops are, really? Ok, I’m not saying that what Chief Keesee did was right, but come on people….these are the men and women who have to put on a gun and vest every day to go to work to keep us safe. Is this the best Brian Maass can do? When do I get to see the face and hear the story of the officer who arrested the man who planted the bomb at Colorado Mills Mall? All I hear is “Police arrested a man who…..”, or “Denver Police are investigating a …..”. Where is the story of ” the officers who saved the live of ….. ” or “the officer who arrested the man with the gun who…..”?
    Chief Keesee has been on the force long enough to become a “Chief” so she has clearly been around long enough to be the one we have called in a time of need. Having said that, if she needs to take her city car home to Elizabeth or Parker or where ever, then…OK, thank you for giving your life in service and I will gladly pay the taxes for your gas. Now can we please have a better “cop” story? Certainly there are ones better than this!!!

    1. whirledpeasplease says:

      This woman is chief of the Research, Training and Technology Division. She is NOT EVER called into Denver for emergency reasons. There is NO REASON for her to spend so much of the taxpayer’s money to commute her single self in a huge Lincoln Navigator all the way to and from Elizabeth.
      She ought to be reprimanded, made to repay the gas money used over the 50 miles daily limit, and have her take-home car privilages revoked. Maybe the whole take-home car program ought to be reviewed.and only used by on-call officers.

    2. DenverVoter says:

      Of course there are better civil servant stories. But when our civil servants take advantage of their positions it cannot be swept under the carpet! If Keesee wants to take a car home fine. Let her pay the difference in gas beyond the maximum 25 miles allowed by the City. Now THAT would be the honorable thing to do for Denver.

    3. More Concerned says:

      Concerned – You are as pathetic as Keesee. Another low-life who believes “the rules don’t apply to me cuz I’m better than the little people”. “….Giving your life in service”??? Really? Just because she works at the DPD doesn’t mean she’s ever given anything more than a day’s work for a day’s pay…..and in Keesee’s case specifically, she’s a devious user who acts without regard for department policy and those who pay that salary.

      I’d say she owes the city 12 x 500 x 6(yr) = $36,000.

  6. Owen G. De'Aeth says:

    Just another government employee taking advantage. And no, dont gimme that BS about donning the gun and badge, she chose her job. And, she isnt a patrol officer or one that answers emergency calls. Gimme a break man..

  7. Shane says:

    As a leader (chief, commander, captain, or whatever), how can she have any credibility reprimanding subordinates if she herself does not follow the rules set by the government ie. tax payers? If a leader can’t be held accountable to follow the rules, how can we expect any subordinates in the department to have integrity their leaders do not? I agree there are a lot of good men and women in the DPD but “leadership” needs to be exactly that! Lead by example, NOT by exception… When was the last time a counterfeiter was told “you’ve been discovered making counterfeit money, you need to stop….? There should be financial and/or career altering consequences for her and her superior for operating above the law.

  8. Honey Badger says:

    Once again, Brian Maass has “EXPOSED” how corrupt the Denver Police Department is. His insight and investigative reporting into “fuel records” is inspiring. I wonder how much fuel Maass used in order to headline this breaking story of the egregious misuse of City/County funds.

    And to coin an 80’s phrase, “things that make ya’ go hmmmmmm”…isn’t it FUNNY how…. the first Black female frontrunner for Chief of Police is featured in a negative light (complete with pics), even going so far as to insinuate favoritism and some heretofor unknown nefarious conspiracy between Keesee and the new Mayor. Oh and by the way…..that’s Doctor T. Keesee….you Jack@ss……when the police department has issues like:
    An executive order prohibiting the use of tape or video recorders being used to tape ANY officer of the rank Sergeant or higher; for which, the “offending” officer can be FIRED…..contrary to Colorado State law. And that this order from the Manager of Safety was only enacted AFTER suspensions were handed out for such recordings, prior to the “rule” being on the books.

    Where was your breaking story there????? Yep….Maass, you are the Denver area journalistic version of the Weekly World News Bat-Boy reporter. The gods forbid you report something of substance, as it relates to the DPD. Maass…you are a freakin’ disgrace. Remember to use Oxi-Clean and not bleach on your robes and hood Maass. You wouldn’t want to wash out the CBS 4 logo on the sleeves. Although….with a Black Mayor and a Black Chief of Police….I’m sure you could find more reports of substance to inform the citizens of Denver.

    1. Chase says:

      I read and re-read the article and I failed to find anything about race. I’m gonna guess you are an African-American police officer or gov’t worker? Your post is pretty sad. If you are a cop, aren’t you supposed to uphold the constitution of the U.S.A.? What happened to freedom of speech and freedom of press? It’s safe to say by reading all the comments on this news article and seeing the view count that Maass has done a pretty good job or reporting on a violation of the rules and regulations. She drives a freakin’ Navigator, lives out of the set boudries and doesn’t respond to emergency calls! Go ahead and try to legimize that for me. I served my country for eleven years and was honorable discharged under my own will. You would never see me drive a humvee home or land a chopper in my yard. Hell, you’d never see my commanding officers do it! Cops always think they are above the law and people like you and her make the good ones look bad. I sleep good at night knowing that it’ll come back around to the criminal cops. Always challenge authority.

      1. Honey Badger says:

        I’m not African-anything for starters. I am a Black-American. Save the PC for your other “friends”. And just the statement: “Cops always think they are above the law” shows the depths to your ignorance. Does that cover all cops or just the ones here in the Metro area where we civilians are unfortunate enough to have you retire from the military in?
        You obviously haven’t been in the Denver area long or are just oblivious to Brian Maass’ reporting. There’s nothing informative about this piece. Maass makes a living out of sensationalizing anything as it pertains to the DPD. Chief Keesee is a great cop. Insofar as legitimizing anything for you….really??? Do some research and you’ll find out why Chief Keesee may need a take-home car. And if I was a cop, I think I would know, that to uphold Constitutional law would ABSOLUTELY NOT include whether or not a police Chief who has permission is violating some law with a take home car.

    2. Clean cop says:

      Honey Badger: It’s obvious you need help. Next time take your medication before you post.

      1. Honey Badger says:

        Hey Clean….I’m not gonna’ hate on you because you’re a Maass supporter. I’m not going to make it personal with you. If you are a cop….then thank you for your service. However, my lack of medication will never stop me from calling out the worst reporter in the State of Colorado. To me, he’s a biased, rascist jag that should be relegated to the horoscope columns.

    3. More Concerned says:

      Honey Badger – You are really really hateful and disgusting!

  9. Jeremy Gautreaux says:

    And she is in line to be the new police chief. It amazes me how these people can do whatever they think just because of theor position. She has knowingly violated this policy without a doubt. I’d like to know the last time she responded for an emergency with her desk job. Another public servant abusing the system but they never have to be accountable for anything and we have to pay for it. She needs to resign immediately. Mr. Mayor, please appoint a differnt police chief. Someone with integrity! Thank you.

  10. steve says:

    Fire her A now

  11. S Dot says:

    Many of us on the Denver Police Department are aware that this story was fed to Brian Maass by an individual in the highest level of the police department in yet another effort on his part to cast Division Chief Keesee in a bad light. She has done and continues to do an amazing job for our department and the citizens we serve and protect, Chief Keesee lives 6 and one half miles beyond the 25-mile perimeter and she received authorization directly from Chief Whitman to drive the car to her house. NO ONE on the department may authorize their own take home car – that is left entirely to the Chief as is referenced in the story.

    1. Clean Cop says:

      S Dot: Please, justify why a desk officer is (1) assigned a take-home vehicle, and (2) abuses the privilege at taxpayers’ expense. Don’t forget that we’re living in a time when entire cities are disbanding their fire and police departments. Keesee needs to fine-tune certain character issues before she moves up.

      1. Cleaner Cop says:

        Clean cop, your first question should be one for the present Chief of Police, as it was made clear in this poorly reported news story, Keesee cannot authorize a take home car for herself.

        As for the second question of abuse, I read nothing in the article about calls Keesee may or may not have responded to as a chief; therefore, until those facts are in order, can you really say it is abuse? The news reports a lot of things, and they almost never do it objectively, anymore. This story was flawed, because it had an agenda to tarnish, not inform.

        Finally, I don’t know if you have met Keesee…if you have, you definitely have a right to your opinion. If you haven’t, you probably have no right to speak on her character.

      2. Clean cop says:

        Cleaner cop: Your judgment is obviously impaired. There is a 25-mile limit on driving take-home vehicles. Anything beyond that is abuse of public trust and a mayoral dictate. Second, a police officer’s “character” is determined by actions and decisions. It has nothing to do with friendship. If you were/are a cop you should know that. Further, that Keesee even asked the chief to bend the rules for her personal (monetary) benefit indicates a serious lack of judgment. Maass may have uncovered something more serious here.

    2. get real says:

      Doesn’t matter who reported S Dot, fact remains she was aware of the policy and was NOT to drive it home, Chief Whitman had NO authority to override this rule…..and we PAY the gas and mileage on this vehicle and there is absolutely NO reason you could possibly give that would condone her driving it home other than convenience…she has a freaking desk job and when was the last time she responded to any emergency?????

  12. Denvermust change says:

    my question would be why a Lincoln Navigator???? are you serious???

  13. RockyMtn says:

    Yaaawwwnnnn. Aren’t we at war still? Brian Maas is boring.

  14. Cleaner Cop says:

    Again, Clean Cop makes a judgement call. Just because I disagree with you does not mean my judgement is impaired. Maybe we need to examine the character of one who attacks, rather than discusses.

    Also, if Keesee asked, Whitman could’ve said no. Apparently he didn’t have the problem that some people posting on here do.

    Finally if you really are a cop (as I am) then you know how the media works. If you are taking all of this at face value instead of recognizing what is actually taking place, YOUR judgement may be lacking.

    1. Chase says:

      My judgement is not lacking. It wasn’t a call that needed judgement. Whitman didn’t have the authority to approve her vehicle use outside of the City’s ruled boundaries. I’m at a loss as to why you can’t comprehend this. This iis the problem with you bad cops. It doesn’t matter if Whitman didn’t have a problem with it, it’s not his call. So many cops think they are above the law. Everything from law enforcement should be taken at “face value” and authority should always be challenged. Someone has to police the police because many cops are lacking significant core values…….such as honor.

      1. Cleaner Cop says:

        Chase, unless you’re writing under both names (Clean Cop and Chase), I wasn’t addressing you. But if the shoe fits…

        Whitman didn’t have the authority to approve it, but approve he did. I haven’t read where people are calling for his job.

        As for “face value”, I have no problem questioning authority…I think many should. Just as many should question what the media provides to us. As usual, Brian Maass half reported a story…some of the public ate it up…and now the debates begin.

        I yield to RkyMtn…we have a war going on…Brian Maass is boring.

    2. Josh Kucey says:

      You guys are ridiculous. Your so willing to stand up for a fellow officer when they do wrong but god forbid giving the benefit of doubt to a regular civilian rather than arresting them because a woman said they laid hands on them but doesn’t have any marks to prove it. Further more, you guys are the biggest baddest gang in colorado. I’m so afraid of DPD that just the sight of a vehicle makes me shiver. You thugs break the law on a daily basis with illegal searches and pulling people over for no reason other than gut feeling. Hell, you guys kicked my ass in a holding cell when I was 13 yrs old and that too was covered up. Your all a bunch of bullies who break the rules all the time and when you get exposed, you throw a fit. All you officers who give speaches to offenders befor you throw them in the back of your car should take the same stand aginst fellow officers who break the rules. Ohhhh, it’s different when a brother or sister in uniform does something dishonest. Typical double standard by the baddest group of thugs in colorado, DPD.

  15. Common says:

    Actually, Get real, it does matter. The person, whom must suspect, leaked this story to Maass, violated a confidentiality agreement (no not the Blue Wall of Silence, an actual and legal agreement) for self serving reasons. This is more egregious than an extra 15 miles outside of the boundaries.

    Of course Maass doesn’t cover this because then he’d actually have to find a story as opposed to having one handed to him. That’s right, he’s protecting his source who has violated a department policy…where are the post about that.

  16. Bill says:

    Yet again a story of a government employ not only making much more then normal wages and benefits but actively stealing from the people and then they tell us this thief (A Police officer) No Wait a chief of the Research, Training and Technology Division. Is being set up to be Chief of Police in Denver, A proven thief? and we wonder why our country is in the shape it is in!!! Dirty Cops are a big problem in this croup government and time. Here again is purer corruptness, This officer needs to be fired. Made to pay back the cost of vertical and fuel and maintenance. This Theft put on permanent record! Told she could not do this and she continued is theft. This kind of law needs to be treated as it is and prosecuted to the fullest degree. Dirty Cops need to be weeded out and made an example of. What next stealing from the evidence room? Special privileges for her friends? how far will this go? No this is one dirty cop exposed and she needs to be removed from police work and prosecuted for crimes commented. No exceptions made. They sure don’t make exceptions for us on the streets! Attempt to take away our ways of protecting our selves when they can and will not, When our government in Colorado blatantly protects illegal invaders and criminals on every front. This is just one more exampled of government gaff alive and well in Colorado. Dirty criminal police here at some of the higher positions. Denver’s crooked cops! But hay they are cops so they will get away with it, People this needs addressed, she needs to be fired and charged with her crimes, made accountable for them and forced to pay back the expenses on the huge Lincoln Navigator and fuel and all costs associated with it. then denied ever holding police work in the future on ethics charges! She has proven in her mind she is above the law, This type of person should not be in police work, A common thief!

  17. Brad says:

    If she isn’t made to repay/reimburse the taxpayers for what is, in essence, stealing from the State of Colorado as well as reliquish her position for her impropriaties then there is indeed something terribley wrong with our justice system. People in positions like this have got to held to the highest of standards … be positive examples of the exepliary citizens we want or kids to be. It’s sas when the crooks themselves can point to our own police force and say “even the cops are crooked”. She needs to be made an example of!

  18. Lance says:

    Your right, Bill and Brad. Every cop in this city is dirty and should be replaced! It’s impressive that you both took the time to get to know each of the 1400 officers who work for Denver so that you could come to such informed opinions.

  19. Lt. R.T. Conner says:

    Division Chief, Dr. Tracie Keesee, PhD doesn’t need me to defend her because there is nothing to defend because she DID NOT violate any policy. She was given permission to drive her car by Chief Whitman, so it is his decision that should be the subject of this article. Come on Brian, are you that hard up for a story that you fell for a nothing issue from upper level Command Officers who are afraid of loosing their jobs when a new police administration takes over. These Command Officers will doing anything to submarine and attack the credibility one of the most honest and respected officers in the history of the Denver Police Department. Also, there is an issue with the fact that she is an African American female. She scares them with her intelligence and abilities, just check her record. The DPD has real problems that calls for real solutions and the citizens of Denver deserves its medai to focus on the real issues affecting their lives and not get involved with internal politics.

    p.s. Brian, if you going to use retired police officers in your article, make sure their career was tainted with moral and ethical issues.

    1. Denverbusinessman says:

      Excuse me, after your post, that reeks of potential career advancement in your so-called defense of Keesee, and your ‘typical’ attack of the messenger, who is neither at fault or on trial here, I find the actions of Keesee to be both disgusting and reprehensible! Show me the evidence, after all, you do operate in the area of evidence, don’t you… that Keesee, the so-called Manager of Records, a very cushy and high rewarding and paying DESK JOB… show me the written permission of Whitman, , the actual record that should stretch back to 2005, show me the authorization that Whitman used to over-ride the department’s directive of allowable maximum mileage? The only convenient authorization available is the June 15, 2011 letter! How convenient this recent one appears when this story is about to break-out! For me, this is NOT a matter of only the so-called allowable fifty miles. It’s about the personal and excessive use of a LARGE and FUEL INEFFICIENT city owned AND maintained vehicle. Keesee uses the vehicle for what appears to be ALL of her personal driving with the amount of fuel she’s billing directly to the city. Plus Keesee receives the totally maintained, insured use of the vehicle. Most probably, any taxpayer would consider the total yearly sum of all this to be in excess of $12,000 + dollars a year. The fact that Keesee has used this vehicle without any written authorization by the Chief, which smacks of the good-old boy network in full action, for six plus years, demonstrates to me that Keesee thinks she is above the rules and regulations of the DPD. Furthermore, there is no mention or innuendo of race in Maass’ article at all. For you to play the race card, bespeaks of an officer of the DPD who is so surely looking for a career advancement in ‘kissing-up’ should Keesee advance further in her career at DPD. You and Keesee should both be ashamed at yourselves for thinking that the Denver taxpayers and property owners, who pay your lucrative salaries, benefits and pensions would sit idly by and take the untruths and frauds from Keesee or you for that matter. By the way, I pay Denver property taxes! Keesee appears to NOT be paying any by her living forty something miles (each way) away! Keesee has done a huge WRONG that needs to be corrected and not covered-up!

  20. Brad says:

    Lance – didn’t say ‘every’ cop is bad but to be honest I’ve seen more bas examples than I’ve seen good one. The cop sitting in the turn lane at a red light while the car in lane next to him runs the red light he’s stopped & he does nothing – light turns green he turns into a fast food restaurant. My house alam goes off while I’m an hour away from the house – I advise the alarm co. to have an officer dispatched to check it out – even though an hour away I got there before the officer did – he showed up 15 minutes after i did. Worse examples are teh awards recently paid for excessive force…this example of abuse of wrongly using taxpayer property for personal benefit is a further example of abusing the taxpayer…$500 a month is fuel expenses not to mention the use of the vehicle it self – are you kidding me?? When does DPP plan on issuing Denver Citizens gas cards? She should be made to pay every penny back & pay the purchase price of the vehicle as well. To think she felt ‘entitled’ to a special exception suggests she’s not someone to hold a position of such responsibility…she should be expected to resign without pension & without benefits of any kind..

    1. Lance says:

      You’ve seen more bad examples than good ones? See, there you go again. What exactly is your frame of reference? How many ride-alongs have you been on? What exactly do you know about police work? It’s really easy for people like you to jump on the band wagon and kick the cops around, because that’s just what people do in Denver. One of the bad examples you mentioned was the time you had an alarm at your house, and you got there 15 minutes before the officer did. Was there a break in, or was it a false alarm? What was the officer doing before he got your alarm call, or did you even bother to ask? I doubt it. If there was a valid reason for a delayed response to your alarm it wouldn’t be so easy to jump to conclusions and make assumptions, would it? You think you’re entitled to paint an entire profession with the same brush because that’s what Brian Maass and the rest of the Denver media does. That’s what I have a problem with. You would too if everyone who is part of your profession was under constant attack. Why anyone would want to be a cop in this city is beyond me. They’re damned if they do and damned if they don’t because of people like you.

  21. Linda Walsdorf says:

    Just keep riding those brakes Tracie! The rest of the city employees can take another furlough day so that the Chief of Mops and Brooms can drive a big fancy SUV home five days a week…well, probably more like three, I cant imagine you show up five days a week….you go, girl!

  22. chuck says:

    why are the denver employes allowed to live outside city limits? inout part of the country they have to live within city limits.

    1. Number 6 says:

      The People’s Republic of Denver used to make employees live within city limits; but it caused them problems with recruiting and keeping employees. Most of the employees couldn’t afford to live in the decent parts of the city and went elsewhere for employment, or job seekers said the heck with working in Denver if they were going to be forced to live in the PRD.

      The PRD charges a Head Tax to people working in the city limits; but live outside of it. This privilege tax is levied against people regardless of whether they work for a private company or the city.

  23. carlos rodriguez says:

    This is thievery any which way you look at it. The guy authorizing it and user should be made responsible and pay back any monies owed or jailed period. If the law breaks the law we have no law.

  24. Jim S says:

    It is clear that she took advantage of the situation. I would be willing to bet you any amount of money that she filled her tank on Thursday or Friday and also used that car over the weekend. Filled up on Monday! Check the records. Anyone who takes advantage, always takes advantage.

    1. Cleaner Cop says:

      I’ll take that bet, Jim. I know for a fact, she didn’t.

  25. Casper108 says:

    Brian Maass is certainly not Channel 4’s best reporter by any means, The real question here is why is the city spending money on a Lincoln Navigator? If authorized by Chief Whitman, Keese could have traveled back and forth in a Toyota Prius (a cheaper car with a lot better gas mileage).

  26. Number 6 says:

    The mayor needs to haul Whitman and Keesee into his office and in a stern tone of voice say, “BAD COP! NO DOUGHNUT FOR YOU!”

  27. Not Holier Than Thou says:

    I am not condoning or condemning Dr. Keesee for what she is accused, however, I am going to ask all of you who seem to think all police officers think they are above the law, are you so perfect that you can make this claim and condemn these officers, half of who you don’t even know? How many of you have ever received a parking ticket you didn’t pay? How many of you have ever drove drunk? How many of you picked up and kept a dollar bill in a casino or a store that didn’t belong to you? How many of you have exceeded the posted 55 MPH speed limit on the highway? How many of you have sat parked on the curb at DIA waiting for your loved one(s) to return home from a trip, when the posted sign in front of you states no parking? Yes, all simple laws, but laws none the less that have been and continue to be violated on a daily basis by citizens who think they are above the law. My point is, we have all violated a law at some time in our lives. Maybe those violations seem pointless only because you were not caught at the time you violated it. So next time you are stopped by an officer who gives you a break or listens to you, think about calling that officer’s sergeant and give them a positive comment. It seems the only time an officer is recognized and appreciated is when they have died in the line of duty. The last officer killed was Donny Young, let’s not wait until the next officer dies before we acknowledge them.

  28. Mike says:

    A couple things here….now that we’re just bashing cops in general. Maas should have reported a comparison. Because ALL Denver PD Chiefs drive Luxury SUV’s and they drive them 24/7, not just back and forth to work. You tell me how much gas just these chiefs are using a year, weather they live in the city or not????? I’ve seen a Denver Chief who drives his luxury SUV to all his kids soccer games….now that’s an emergency isn’t it?

    Next we all know the country would be a better place if we got rid of all police officers. We all know there’s no good cops out there. We all know we could do a better job of policing ourselves, if we were just given the chance to do so. That would take care of the huge expense for cop funerals…as there would not be any, anymore. The homicide rate would go down as cops wouldn’t be killing citizens anymore. Robberies, burglaries and rapes would be obsolete because we’d be watching our own backs, and not counting on cops to help us.

    The possibilities are endless….let’s get rid of the cops and happy days are here again.

    1. K says:

      Ok… ur a moron….. enough said!

  29. Common says:

    The fact that B.L has to resort to profanity; insults; name calling; and is threatening suicide if certain people get elected; completely undermines his credibility. Perhaps a mental health hold is in order…

  30. B.L. says:

    “Concerned” you’re truely just another MORON!

    When you accept to become a cop, you swore to serve and protect the citizens of this country and knowingly that you might GIVE YOUR LIFE doing this. Remember this is something you wanted to do.

    FYI – We as people of this society have rules to follow. The same goes to our PDs.

    Just because they might give their life to serve and protect or have a PhD or been with the department for 50 years long enough to become a chief, you’re saying that gives them the right to abuse tax payer’s money that could goes to people or agencies that really needs it.

    Where are your integrity and morals? OH WAIT! YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT THAT MEANS.


    Hey, I have a solution for you and your going-to-be next DPD chief that will make everyone happy. Why don’t you come out publicly and tell everyone that you will PERSONALLY give the next chief $500 or however much she spends on gas plus maintenance of the vehicle every month. Remember your own money not from a pool of tax payer’s money.

    Then I don’t think anyone would have a problem with this issue anymore.


  31. Probe says:

    As a former volunteer fireman in this area, I can tell you I had no one paying for my vehicle, the gas, let alone the emergency lights and siren (or insurance). I had to use my vehicle to get to the firehouse and sometimes directly to the scene. I gave my time and used my own financial resources to help those in need. I would think this desk jockey would be paid enough to use her own car and pay her own gas. I guess guys like me are just suckers.

    1. Joey says:

      Yeah, me too. I had to pay for all of my expenses when I delivered pizza for Dominos. It’s not fair!!!

  32. WoW says:

    I can’t believe you people. she is the only Chief who cares about the community, the City and County of Denver and the Police Dept. She is not with the GOOD OLD BOYZ. Ask any Denver Police Officer… Go Chief Keese!

  33. Jacob says:

    Some things were certainly left out of this article, but it does make a point. This is a person who probably makes very good money($70,000 or more), plus full health benefits and retirement, ALL paid for by taxpayers. She certainly makes enough to pay for her own vehicle and gas for PERSONAL use. I have no problem with someone taking home a city vehicle, if there is a need and it is used for official business. This situation seems excessive. I’m with others that think she is using this luxury car for ALL of her driving, personal and official. I find it irrelevant that she has a desk job. She probably started out on the street and worked her way up. She has paid her dues for the cushy job.

    BUT, regardless of whether or not the cheif approved it, it shows lack of integrity because she KNEW the city ordinance and never should have asked for this favor in the first place.

    Where I work, we cannot wear flip flops. It’s part of the dress code. It’s the rule. Is it OK for me to ask my boss if I can wear flip flops as an exception to the rule? No, it’s not. I would never do that because I know the rules apply to me as much as anyone. I have integrity. If I do ask my boss and he says yes, the he also lacks integrity. It seems both of these individuals lack some integrity. I’m glad she has been made to stop driving the vehicle home. Welcome to life in the real world where those of us who don’t make much are struggling!

  34. Dr. Tracie Keesee says:

    It is truly amazing too read the many opinions and judgments made regarding a person who many of you don’t know. Of course I expected much since much of the spin on the story did not include the facts. First of all when I was appointed commander in 2005 I had been living in Elizabeth for five years. I made that clear to the Chief and did not try to conceal it in addition where I live is common knowledge through out the department. In fact, I drove my personal car from home to work and use my unmarked car while at work. It was not until I arrived at a critical incident in my personal car which was observed by Chief Whitman. Immediately following Chief Whitman instructed me to take my car home. For those of you who have ever been in the military or in a paramilitary organization know that you would not question nor quiz your superiors on their knowledge and limits of their authority. If Chief Whitman, Manager of Safety etc. would have told me five years to park my car it would have been done. If there was any wrong doing on my part I encourage IAB or the Independent Monitor to open an investigation I have nothing to hide. There are some folks who would like to turn this into a racial issue and I do not beleive that this is the case. However I do beleive there are folks within the DPD who know that things will truly change whether the next change comes from inside or out. There are those who have resisted doing the right thing and treating the community and officers in the manner in which they deserve in hopes the status quo will help them hold onto to their positions. I support free speech and self expression I always have and always will. The one thing I hope is added to this ongoing discourse is fact. For those of you who would like to bash Brian Mass he is not the blame here. He only follows stories that are provided to him. He and I spoke over the phone and I also explained to him what is mentioned here and of course it is his journalistic freedom to report how he chooses. As I tell folks who I have worked for and worked with and to the Denver community whom I have served over twenty-one years, I would be more than happy to answer any additional questions about this topic.

    1. Bob Simmons says:

      Dr. Keesee – from what I’m told, not exactly accurate. Wasn’t there a take home car audit performed? Really, weren’t you told by your immediate supervisor (wasn’t that a division chief) that you couldn’t drive your police car home and wasn’t your written request for a take home car returned to you denied? Did you tell everyone that you were parking at the Parker fire station and when called out, had to first go to Parker to get your police car. Maybe my information is incorrect, in which case I apologize. If I’ve been provided with accurate information, then I think you’re editing history and deferring responsibility.

    2. Denverbusinessman says:

      So, according to you, ONE ‘critical’ incident prompted Chief Whitman to verbally, and NOT in writing, authorize you to take your city/DPD use vehicle to be used ALL the time? Is that correct? You’re telling us that Chief Whitman ‘overrode’ a departmental written action by ‘verbally’ giving you permission? I just want to make sure this is the correct sequence of events. How come there is NO corresponding written authorization by Whitman giving you this ‘permission’ to use the city vehicle FULL TIME? After all, the written action was a broad based ‘command’ without any exemptions, according to all reports. And you mean to tell us that you were given both an exemption AND a verbal one at that without any accompanying written authorization? I personally and professionally find this to be so contrary to proper corporate and municipal departmental rules, regulations and procedure! So, this ONE critical incident occurred… how many other times did you have to ‘show up’ at another ‘critical incident’ which supports Whitman’s verbal authorization which in the long term has cost the city most probably well over $70,000 for your full time use of the vehicle? This whole ‘fiasco’ sounds really strange, not in the norm and most of all, an action not following city-wide policy or regulations! Very weird indeed!

    3. Brian Maass-CBS4 says:

      Chief Keesee- Thank you for taking the time and effort to post your thoughts here. However you have made some statements and inferences that need to be questioned, and further explained.

      You suggest the CBS4 story did not include the facts- but the facts you mentioned in your reply were included in the broadcast, and online stories. We mentioned repeatedly your assertion that Chief Whitman gave you permission to do this. However we also demonstrated that he never had the authority to allow a take home car to go to Elizabeth every night. The Manager of Safety/Mayor have the ability to investigate and question the Chief’s actions.Following our reporting, the Mayor did just that, agreeing that this was done improperly on the part of Chief Whitman and he ordered your take home car parked, pending further review.

      You said you would be more than happy to answer any additional questions about this, but the truth is, you have not answered a number of questions that I emailed to you on multiple occasions before we reported this story.
      Here are the questions you have not answered, that we asked you several times via phone and/or email:
      -How many times have you been ‘called out’ after hours or on days off/vacations in the last 12 months?
      -If you had a take home car since 2005, why were there no authorization forms on file for you at all, for six years, as are required of every department member with a take home vehicle? As you know from overseeing the DPD fleet, those forms are to be filled out on an annual basis. Why didn’t you?
      -Why when we requested your take home care authorizatin forms on June 15, did Sgt. O’Shea, your subordinate in your chain of command, fill them out that day saying you lived in Parker? Did you not take a look at those forms before they were turned over to CBS4?
      Would you answer these questions in this forum?

      It seems important to keep in mind the broader issue here that was articulated in our report by a retired police Lieutenant, and is something I hear repeatedly from rank and file members of the department: that when strict rules that are supposed to apply to all department members are broken, bent, overlooked or selectively enforced, it impacts the ‘culture’ of the police department in a negative way and creates a rift and an ongoing culture of suspicion and distrust. The street officers feel that there are two sets of rules: one for them, and another for higher ups.
      Its a story as much about culture, as it is about a car.

      1. Victoria Oliver says:

        The retired police Lieutenant you spoke with has a tarnished record, Mr. Maass. So his credibility (and yours for speaking with him), is seriously in question.

        As for the police department, much of the suspicion and distrust you comment on does not come from Dr. Keesee driving a vehicle home, but from people in high ranking positions who manipulate journalist to write stories to support their agenda.

        I’m a police officer for the Denver Police Department. I have spoken to you on one occassion, several years ago while you were jogging in Cheeseman Park and I was doing foot patrol. I have not spoken with you since. I have also spoken with many of my co-workers who feel this story was ridiculous, malicious and calculated. I’m sure you did not speak with these officers; nor have you spoken to me; so you are in NO position to cite how Denver Police officers feel.


      2. WoW says:

        I gotta tell you Mr. Maass you missed it this time. I also spoke with you once. I even accepted you business card. I gotta tell you, I am disappointed to learn that you are so easy to manipulate. Wow… I once thought that you were doing a great job. Please tell me you recognize that you have been played! I wanna stay a fan! It happens to the best of us. You known Dr. Keesee is the only hope to get things better.
        Go Chief Keese!

  35. Not Holier Than Thou says:

    Thank you Dr. Keesee for your time and your service.

  36. pbarton says:

    I think alll of them (police) get paid enough to drive thier own cars and pay for thier own gas and maintenance.,why doesn’t she live within the city limits?

  37. Rob C says:

    Sounds like Dr. Keesee has decided to avoid any truthful discourse about this matter. Not surprising as DPD is just a joke as are those employed.

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