DPS withholds information about former Capitol Police officer’s DUI arrest

Few details released after WLBT obtained arrest report, traffic ticket from incident
Published: Mar. 21, 2023 at 6:57 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Capitol Police officer Steven Frederick wasn’t on duty when troopers stopped him more than a week ago, but he was considerably inebriated, one of few details released in records WLBT requested from the arrest.

While much of the incident report and arrest report obtained exclusively by 3 On Your Side was redacted -- meaning DPS chose to withhold certain things from the public -- it did show Frederick’s blood alcohol level was 0.127, one and a half times the legal limit.

News of Frederick’s resignation from the department would later emerge from DPS hours after the arrest was made public.

The report also noted Frederick had a handgun, rifle, and shotgun in his 2012 Ford F150 at the time of his arrest, and he was marked as armed by troopers.

The documents describe the March 12 incident as a single-vehicle accident that took place shortly after 4 a.m.

It also noted the 38-year-old Frederick was uninjured, but the report represents a more sanitized version than MHP Lt. Chase Elkins originally released to reporters.

In an email sent days after the arrest, Elkins told WLBT that Frederick ran another vehicle off the road and hit several road signs.

The arrest report and incident report obtained by WLBT did not contain any of that information.

The agency said it removed everything considered “investigative reports” as defined by state law, which is allowed and could mean that DPS is still investigating the incident and Frederick’s actions.

However, a public body is not forbidden from releasing those details even if they deal with an ongoing case.

The state’s Public Records Act grants a great deal of latitude to those agencies when it comes to deciding what it should and should not release, meaning the agency could have chosen to make those details public if officials there wanted to do so.

The documents, which included the traffic tickets issued by Trooper Daniel Loftin, confirm Frederick had been charged with careless driving and driving under the influence (first offense).

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