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KCK-WyCo commissioner censured for problems at Legoland, with police

Updated: 2013-09-12T22:52:27Z

By KAREN DILLON

The Kansas City Star

A ruckus at Legoland, altercations with police and other contrary acts led to a Unified Government commissioner being censured Thursday.

Tarence Maddox, who has been a commissioner since 2011, previously was charged in Kansas City Municipal Court with assault and resisting arrest.

He received the censure after the government’s ethics administrator warned him to behave according to the ethics rules, a memorandum of public censure said. Censure is a government body’s formal expression of disapproval.

Maddox, 30, could not be reached Thursday for comment.

The ethics commission is independent of county government.

The commission has “reviewed the facts in these cases and made their ruling,” Mayor Mark Holland said in a statement. “As mayor, I accept the work of our ethics commission.”

Maddox has had several complaints since being elected, the ethics memorandum said:

• Last year, the commissioner attended a visitation for a student who had died and told the family he was holding a fundraiser to help the family. Although Maddox held several youth nights at a Kansas City, Kan., community center, the family never received any money.

• Maddox called police last year to report that a vehicle was following him. He became irate with the other driver and, according to the police report and video, asked the driver, “Have you ever heard of the black mafia?” He told police he was a commissioner and demanded they give him the driver’s name.

“He’s lucky I didn’t drive him down 12th Street,” Maddox said on the police video. “I could’ve had somebody come out and pop him.”

• He was stopped by police in Kansas City, Kan., last year for running a stop sign and speeding. He told police to “go ahead and give him the ticket” and he would have the Legal Department “fix it.” The Legal Department refused to fix the ticket.

• In February, his car was towed. Maddox told tow company personnel they didn’t “know who they were dealing with” and threatened to use his position to affect the contract between the government and the tow company.

The ethics commission began the censorship process in late August after Maddox had an altercation at Legoland with a manager and others that was caught on video. Maddox also resisted being handcuffed. In an apology, Maddox said he had been refused a refund and his family had been disrespected by the staff.

The commission said Maddox is required to attend a basic ethics training class within 30 days and is prohibited from using his commission title for his own private purposes and from attempting to use the Legal Department for personal matters.

To reach Karen Dillon, call 816-234-4430 or send email to kdillon@kcstar.com.

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