TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A former Kansas City, Kansas, police detective who has long been accused of sexually preying on Black women during criminal investigations was indicted Thursday on charges that he sexually abused two women, the FBI said.
Roger Golubski, 69, was arrested at his home in Edwardsville after a federal grand jury indicted him on six counts of civil rights violations.
During a 15-minute hearing, U.S. Magistrate Judge Rebecca Schwartz entered a not guilty plea to all six charges for Golubski, who asked to remain silent. She set a hearing for 3 p.m. Monday on whether he should remain behind bars before his trial. A pretrial hearing was scheduled for Oct. 12.
“I am so happy and stunned at the arrest of that man," one of his alleged victims, Ophelia Williams, said in a statement released by MORE2, a civil rights organization. "I pray that after so many years we finally get justice, people can finally relax, and I can finally sleep at night.”
The Associated Press generally does not name alleged victims of sexual assault, but Williams has allowed her name to be used in previous stories.
Golubski's court-appointed attorney, Tom Lemon of Topeka, indicated that he will ask that Golubski be released before trial because he undergoes daily treatments for serious health issues, including dialysis three or four days a week for failing kidneys.
Golubski is also receiving treatment after quintuple heart bypass surgery in April and takes insulin shots for diabetes, said Lemon, who declined to comment after the hearing.
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“He has been told that if he misses six dialysis treatments, he is going to die,” Lemon said in court. “If he doesn’t receive that daily treatment, he’s going to have trouble helping me in his defense.”
Golubski spoke only when Schwartz asked him whether he wanted her to appoint an attorney for him.
Golubski retired in 2010 after working for the Kansas City Police Department for 35 years. The FBI has been investigating allegations that Golubski, who is white, sexually assaulted Black women in the city and exchanged drugs for information during criminal investigations.
The federal indictment announced Thursday accuses Golubski of sexually assaulting two women, identified as S.K., and O.W., on several occasions between 1998 and 2002. The indictment does not state the race of the women.
He is accused of raping both women and forcing them to perform oral sex on him several times in his vehicle and at the women's homes. Golubski’s conduct included aggravated sexual abuse and kidnapping, according to the indictment.
If convicted of any of the counts, Golubski could be sentenced to life in prison.
Civil rights groups for years sought an investigation into Golubski's conduct. The allegations against him drew more attention after Lamont McIntyre, who spent 23 years in prison for a double murder he didn't commit, sued Golubski and other Kansas City, Kansas, officers after he was released.
McIntyre and his mother, Rose McIntyre, alleged in the lawsuit that Golubski framed Lamont for a double homicide in 1994 because she refused the detective's sexual demands. The local government agreed in June to settle the lawsuit for $12.5 million.
When deposed by McIntyre’s lawyers in the case, Golubski invoked his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination hundreds of times. He has consistently declined media requests to comment on the allegations.
Cheryl Pilate and Lindsay Runnels, attorneys for the McIntyres, commended federal law enforcement agencies on the arrest.
“We are hopeful the justice system delivers the accountability that the Kansas City, Kansas community deserves," they said in a statement.
The Midwest Innocence Project, a civil rights group that works to free wrongfully convicted inmates, said in a statement that Golubski's arrest was “the first step" in finding justice for those harmed by law enforcement officials, particularly Black women.
“A full investigation into the abuses in Wyandotte County and systemic reforms are needed to ensure that no other police officers and public officials can continue to abuse their power,” the organization said in a news release.
Kansas City police Chief Karl Oakman and Wyandotte County District Attorney Mark Dupree each issued a statement pledging to continue cooperating with the investigation and said the arrest proved that no one was above the law.
Executives with MORE2, which also pushed for an investigation into Golubski, applauded his arrest.
“It took over three decades, thirty years of this man living like he is a law-abiding citizen and he is one of the biggest criminals we have in Wyandotte County,” MORE 2 board member Violet Martin said in a statement. She believes her brother and cousin are wrongfully incarcerated because of Golubski.
In 2020, a coalition of Kansas lawmakers, religious leaders and racial justice advocates asked the Kansas Bureau of Investigation to investigate Golubski and other members of the department who were accused of misconduct and abuse.
And in 2021, an organization run by rapper Jay-Z filed a petition seeking records from the police department related to what it called a history of officer misconduct within the department.
This story has been corrected to show that the magistrate’s last name is Schwartz, not Schwarz. It also has been updated to show that Morgan Roach is no longer Golubski's attorney.
Stafford reported from Liberty, Missouri.