Deputies Spying on Police Officers

While away from blogging last month, I saw this story about a Florida sheriff's department that had conducted an investigation of a local police department:

The Pinellas Sheriff's Office is investigating improprieties at the Kenneth City Police Department.

The probe comes at the request of Kenneth City Mayor Teresa Zemaitis after she saw a 110 page report that shed light on how Chief Douglas Pasley and his officers spend their duty time.

The report says Chief Pasley used his town-issued car to go as far away as Orlando, even though he's not contractually (Note: corrected spelling) allowed to take the car out of Tampa Bay.

The report also says the chief has long breakfasts at restaurants outside of Kenneth City while on duty with other officers...

The report also says ...that at least one officer uses the computer in his patrol car to look at dating and bodybuilding websites...

The 110-page report was evidently the product of a previous four month investigation of the police by a sheriff's department.

One hundred and twenty days of snooping and the "smoking guns" are that the chief takes prolonged meal breaks and one officer misused the agency's Internet? 

Seriously?

Yawn.

I can't think of a police department or any other business or agency where if a four month investigation was conducted similar allegations of misconduct or much worse would be the product.

The unmentioned issue is that the less-than-five person police department in Kenneth City accounts for over one million dollars of the community's just over two million dollar budget. 

Times are difficult, and town leaders are looking at cutting costs--and the police department is a very appealing target. 

If the police department needs to be dissolved or combined with another agency, then the mayor should build a case that speaks to the wisdom of such a strategy.

But for now, wake me up when the mayor has something worth publicizing; because deputies "stop-watching" police officers on meal breaks is certainly not raising morale, lowering crime, or making the citizens of South Florida any safer.

17 comments:

Katherine Mercurio Gotthardt said...

Why didn't the powers that be pull Internet usage and mileage records? Seems like a basic audit would have done the trick if they were really interested in saving money. Save some gas, too.

Bob G. said...

Slamdunks:
Using DEPUTIES to spy?

What ever happened to something called INTERNAL AFFAIRS?

(A department THAT small would fall under the jurisdiction of the STATEYS,)

ANd I wouldn't call what the boss did all that "bad"...but maybe the Internet adventures should be curtailed...or kept to his personal system.

There are bigger fish to fry in the real world as it is.

Stay safe

carma said...

Good Lord, it sounds just like our sleepy town's police department, only here there are rarely any significant crimes.

If the dude is looking at dating and bodybuilding sites they should be glad; it could be a lot worse, although maybe it's not because they have filters installed. Either way. Big Deal!!

Jenny said...

Wow! What a crime ridden town you must live it! lol

BobKat said...

Agreed... nor is a six month investigation and abduction of a mother trying to make ends meet and feed her family who gets 12 years in prison for selling 3 marijuana cigarettes to an informant who she probably refused to date in HS.

Time to tighten the belt and put our tax-payer money where it actually makes US safer.

BobKat said...

What I'd like to add is, so what if the officer spends idle time browsing bodybuilding sites online... or the chief has breakfast out of town... what do they expect, a crime to occur every 30 seconds??? Lighten up. As long as the chief is informed, and that means more than in his small hamlet, and the officer is alert, job well done, in my opinion.

When gov't and our high command forget we're human and expect us to act like cyborgs, we're in deep dodo!!!

Brian Miller said...

that is your tax money at work...

Pia said...

thanks for praying, slam. we really need prayers.

and i thought those just happen here on my side of the world. people here hate paying taxes because of that. oh well...

Jeanette Levellie said...

Amazing how we complicate the simple matters, isn't it? Yawn is right!

Clarissa Draper said...

I agree. Useless and a waste of money.

Momma Fargo said...

What a waste. At first when I saw your title, I thought you were referring to my ex (deputy) spying on me (city police). LOL. He got in trouble for that. Anyhoo...I agree that was silly time spent.

Gifts By Katherine said...

Stay safe. Hugs

My Husband's Watching TV... said...

Part of the mill is for the investigation!

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Well at least he's using tax payer's money wisely. ;)

Hope he got some good strength training advice. :D

Lydia K said...

I definitely think there are far bigger fish to fry, to borrow Bob's metaphor.

kathryn said...

Amen to that. I wonder how that mayor would explain away wasting all those taxpayer dollars on creating that report...not to mention all those trees.

Doesn't it seem like some people have way too much time on their hands?

CL Beck, author said...

Cops put their lives on the line, and the Mayor is squawking because of time spent in a restaurant? Well, let the Mayor go on patrol on midnights for a couple of months and see if that changes his mind.