Phoenix City Councilman Sal DiCiccio upset how city handled kidnapping stats whistleblower

Phoenix City Councilman Sal DiCiccio is glad Sgt. Phil Roberts will wear a Phoenix police uniform again.

But he said he's upset about the hundreds of thousands of dollars the city spent trying to silence the 28-year veteran who blew the whistle about the city's overblown kidnapping statistics.  

"The city is spending money in a vindictive way," DiCiccio said.

Sgt. Phil Roberts was fired after a series of memos alleging police misconduct. But he got his job back after the city offered to settle his lawsuit.

So far, the city has paid outside lawyers more than $440,000 in the case, records show. That total does not include any settlement money that will go to Roberts or his attorneys.

The ABC15 Investigators broke the story on Thursday but have been covering Robert's case for the past two years.

In the past, DiCiccio has openly questioned the integrity of Phoenix's investigation of Roberts.

"What they did to him is wrong," he said.

When Roberts spoke out about the kidnapping statistics, he was placed under investigation for five different allegations within a few weeks.

Union representatives and Roberts attorneys called it "clear retaliation."

Click here for a detailed explanation, history and breakdown for all of the kidnappings Phoenix Police claimed happened in 2008.

The ABC15 Investigators have learned Roberts will be assigned to the Mountain View Precinct and will begin work in about a month.

City officials are still declining to speak about the settlement decision saying litigation hasn't been finalized yet.

For the same reason, a spokesperson also declined to provide the final cost this case has cost taxpayers.

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