The officer who helped catch serial killer John Wayne Gacy says the police need to be held accountable in cases like George Floyd’s death

John wayne gacy arrest 1978
John Wayne Gacy during his arrest on December 22, 1978. Bettman/Contributor via Getty Images
  • Retired investigator Mike Albrecht told Insider that police need to be held more accountable.
  • Albrecht is a veteran of the Des Plaines police department, where he helped arrest John Wayne Gacy.
  • According to Albrecht, police need to work harder to prevent incidents like George Floyd’s death.
  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Retired investigator Mike Albrecht told Insider that police departments across the country need to take more accountability.

Albrecht was speaking specifically about high-profile incidents like George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Albrecht, who’s featured in the upcoming Peacock true-crime documentary “John Wayne Gacy: Devil in Disguise,” is a veteran of the Des Plaines police department, and helped catch prolific serial killer Gacy in 1978.

When asked about the nationwide outcry against law enforcement following Black Lives Matter protests and calls for reform, Albrecht said that officers need to be held accountable for their actions.

“The police department is not going to be any different than any other profession in the world, and in the country,” he told Insider. “You’re going to have some very good officers. You’re going to have some that aren’t so good, just average, and then you’re going to have some that are not good at all.”

Albrecht denounced the actions of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, who’s been charged with third-degree murder in relation to Floyd’s death. The trial is set to begin soon.

“He knew exactly what he was doing, and to put it mildly, he didn’t give a damn,” Albrecht said.

He added that in his 45 years as a police officer, he never once used excessive force against a suspect, especially when it came to high-profile cases like Gacy’s.

“The worst thing that could happen, like with John Gacy, if we would have done something that violated his rights or anything like that, that would jeopardize the case, you know,” Albrecht told Insider. “And what kind of disservice is that?”

John wayne gacy mug shot 1978
John Wayne Gacy was convicted of murdering 33 people. Bureau of Prisons/Getty Images

“You’re going to have somebody like that, who killed 33 people, get off on technicalities, or some reason like, you didn’t like him, or used violence on him, or whatever process was not within his rights,” he continued. “He’s going to be laughing at you, and he’s going to get off – that criminal is going to get off.”

Albrecht said that police needed to rebuild trust with the communities they serve, and that there needs to be a better way to hold individual officers accountable.

“Law enforcement has to build that trust back with the community. It’s not going to be easy. It’s going to take time,” he said. “And you’ve got to start with the police officers themselves.”

According to Albrecht, department heads need to be on the lookout for officers who aren’t “doing things right,” including using excessive force against civilians, and make sure their issues are handled – whether through counseling or being removed from the job.

“You can’t put people out there that are jeopardizing the public safety – you’re supposed to be protecting public safety,” he said.

“John Wayne Gacy: The Devil in Disguise” premieres March 25 on NBC’s Peacock streaming service. You can watch the trailer below.