SOUTH BEND, Ind. — As the South Bend Police tapes “scandal” continues to work its way through the courts, a major revelation has been ignored by every legacy media outlet in the area; Tim Corbett, former commander of the county’s homicide unit, is not on the tapes.
That information was discovered during testimony on Thursday by one of the only people who has actually heard the tapes, former South Bend Police Communications Director, Karen Depaepe. She said, under oath, Corbett’s voice is not part of any of the recordings. In a judge’s ruling today about the future of the release of those tapes, the judge reiterated that statement by claiming Corbett no longer has standing because he was not recorded. You can read the entire judgement at the bottom of the story, but a snippet of the judgement showing Corbett not being involved is below.
The case started in 2011 when Depaepe said she accidentally found a recorded phone line that was not supposed to be recorded. According to testimony from a 2014 Federal Court Case, Depaepe claims she was trying to troubleshoot the recording system when she heard the voice of Captain Brian Young. She says she believed the discussion was “disturbing” and potentially “illegal.” She then gave several recordings to then Chief of Police, Darryl Boykins. Corbett was immediately pointed out as someone who had been recorded on that line and was made the poster child of the entire scandal.
“I assumed I was on the tapes, because that had been the rhetoric, that had been the theme from the beginning.” Corbett said. “My first reaction to learning I wasn’t on the tapes was, ‘Why have I been the poster child for the tape case for the past 10 years? Why didn’t she come forward and tell the truth from the very beginning?'”
Every single news outlet in the area covered the recent court proceedings, yet none of them mentioned the bombshell that Corbett is no longer considered to be part of the recordings. You can read the South Bend Tribune, WSBT, ABC57 and WNDU articles to see for yourself. WNDU’s Mark Peterson even had a lengthy interview with Corbett’s attorney today and left nearly every detail about the revelations out of his story.
“If I talked to Mark Peterson for 10 minutes, 5 minutes was talking about Steve Richmond and Tim Corbett. They are they farthest things from racists you can meet. Tim has African American family members. He has falsely been made out to be a racist.” Attorney Dan Pfiefer, said. “But the media seems to be hell bent on picking up on the juiciness of gossip and slander and ignoring the facts. This isn’t the first time I’ve told the media this before. Tim and Steve are not on the tapes. On top of that, there are no racial slurs on the tapes according to a release signed by Darryl Boykins (South Bend Police Chief at the time) in a settlement with the City of South Bend several years ago.”
“It’s not on ABC57, WNDU, WSBT the Tribune that I’m not on the tapes? I have been at the center of this!” Corbett said. “It just doesn’t go along with their theme. It doesn’t go along with their character assassination. They’re cowards.”
“Did I think that I would be mentioned? I’m not a bit surprised the media did what they did.” Corbett added. “I can tell you this, I’m not going to be waiting by my phone for people to call saying ‘I’m sorry I profiled you (based on the color of your skin and your occupation as a police officer).’”
The judge did eventually rule that the tapes should be released to the South Bend Common Council, however that is not likely to happen soon. There are several appeals that will be filed. The question as to whether or not the recordings were done legally still has not been answered either.
You can read the entire judgement regarding the case below: