No jail for ex-Kenosha cop who planted evidence

Posted at 7:40 PM, Jun 01, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-01 20:53:42-04

The ex-Kenosha police officer who planted evidence at the scene of a homicide back in 2014 may not spend a single day in prison.

Despite a judge ordering Kyle Baars to spend 1-year in prison and 1-year probation, as long as Baars follows the terms of his probation and stays out of trouble, his 1-year prison sentence will vanish.

Baars who is 28-years-old owned up to his mistakes.

"My actions were improper, unethical, and inexcusable," Baars told the judge in court during his sentencing hearing.

Baars admitted he deliberately planted a suspect's ID and a .22 caliber bullet in a backpack at a homicide scene.

"By planting that ID card and .22 caliber bullet at the scene of a search warrant, the defendant betrayed the public trust and his badge," prosecuting attorney James Martin said.

Baars appeared apologetic in court, but neither he nor his attorney could explain why he did it.

"Everyone has asked him why and the only thing I could say to that is (he had) incredibly poor judgment," defense attorney Mark Richards said.

Baars has no prior convictions or run-ins with law enforcement and had a clean record with the Kenosha Police Department prior to this incident.

"In almost the 3.5 years of being a police officer, I responded to thousands of calls for service and made thousands of good decisions, yet my career is defined by one really bad one," Baars said.

Baars' conviction means he can no longer work in law enforcement.

As for the 2014 homicide investigation Baars tampered with, Brandon Horak, Joseph Brantley and Markese Tibbs remain behind bars for the murder of Anthony Edwards.

According to court documents, Brantley and Tibbs plan to appeal their convictions.