Sheriff's officer on unpaid leave following traffic stop

2012-09-27T15:45:00Z 2012-09-28T12:31:05Z Sheriff's officer on unpaid leave following traffic stopBy Bob Kasarda bob.kasarda@nwi.com, (219) 548-4345 nwitimes.com
September 27, 2012 3:45 pm  • 

VALPARAISO | A Porter County Sheriff's Department officer is serving a 15-day unpaid suspension stemming from a traffic stop in Chesterton.

The unidentified officer was stopped by a Chesterton Police Department officer for allegedly driving a county-owned vehicle with its headlights off, Porter County Sheriff Dave Lain said.

Chesterton authorities allowed the county officer to park the county-owned vehicle, which was not a squad car, and then gave the officer a ride home, Lain said.

Lain said he knew of no alcohol test given to the officer. The exact date of the traffic stop was not available Thursday.

The Chesterton Police Department could produce no report Thursday of the incident in question and Chief David Cincoski issued a statement he "can't substantiate or deny" the allegations.

Lain said his department was notified of the traffic stop late last month and conducted an in-house investigation.

The officer was accused by the Porter County Sheriff's Department with conduct unbecoming of an officer and improperly operating a department vehicle, both of which amount to violations of department policies.

The officer opted not to take the case to the Merit Board and accepted the unpaid suspension, which is under way, Lain said. He is also barred from using his vehicle while off duty and is prohibited from serving on teams with other departments.

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