What Is the Law on Abuse of Authority in Kansas and What Are the Punishments for It?
Anyone who holds a position of authority, whether that be in the form of a public office, as an employer or as a leader of an organization, has certain duties towards maintaining ethical obligations towards those that serve them. It is considered to be an abuse of authority should a person who holds such a position, utilize their role to commit illegal or fraudulent acts.
Abuse of Authority is a broad term that can also encompass various criminal as well as civil cases. The punishments meted out during such crimes are dependent on the severity level of the crimes committed by the abuser, as well as the number of crimes they have committed.
What Is Considered as Abuse of Authority in the State of
The State of Kansas has made detailed as well as strict guidelines that enable legal authorities to both bring to justice those guilty of abusing their authority and meting out relevant punishments for crimes that being two different levels of severity.
It is considered as illegal to abuse the power provided to someone who holds a position of authority, as such a person is expected to responsibly follow through with the obligations of their role. Abusing authority not only enables those in power to misuse information they have on employees or people to manipulate, coerce or bribe them against their will but also to misuse public funds, withhold information or act in ways that are inappropriate for someone who holds such a position.
What Are the Punishments for Abuse of Authority in the State of Kansas?
Kansas has provided an exhaustive list that details the various crimes associated with abuse of authority. The classification in this state is dependent on the severity level of the crime, and details which specific acts constitute an abuse within the state.
The crimes and punishments pertaining to abuse of authority in the State of Kansas include:
- Security Level 5 Nonperson Felony: Anyone found guilty of misusing or manipulating public funds amounting to more than $100,000 is guilty of this offense. The punishment for this crime is either loss of employment or the withdrawal of their position in public office, depending on the authority level of the abuser.
- Security Level 7 Nonperson Felony: Anyone found guilty of taking bribes, of deliberately submitting false or duplicate claims for money amounting to more than $25,000, or of misusing public funds that fall between $25,000-$1000,000 is guilty of this felony. The punishment for this crime is either loss of employment or having to forfeit from public office.
- Security Level 8 Nonperson Felony: Anyone found guilty of destroying, concealing or tampering with official evidence is guilty of this crime and will face either loss of employment or have to forfeit their role in public office.
- Severity Level 9 Nonperson Felony: Anyone found guilty of submitting false or duplicate claims for money amounting to more than $1000, but not greater than $25,000, or of misusing public funds that fall within that same financial category is guilty of this crime. Such a person faces a loss of employment or will have to forfeit their role in public office.
- Class A Nonperson Misdemeanor: Anyone that utilizes an official vehicle, airplane or vessel that belongs to either the government or an employer for their own use is guilty of this crime. Also included in this category are people who do not serve the civil process when they are legally required to, those that use confidential information they obtained on their employees to either coerce or use such information for their own benefit, those that submit false or duplicate claims or misuse public funds where the amount in question is $1000 or less is guilty of this crime. Such a person faces a loss of employment or they will be asked to remove themselves from their public office.
- Class B Person Misdemeanor: Anyone that seeks compensation for official acts or duties performed in the past, as well as anyone that fails to file a statement of true disclosure, is guilty of this crime. Such a person will be punished either through a loss of employment or forfeiture from their role in public office.
Crimes pertaining to abuse of authority in Kansas are in violation of the State's Governmental Ethics provisions, and if found guilty of committing such crimes, will face punishments depending on the severity level of the crime, as well as the number of crimes they committed.