Two Connecticut cops were hanging out together off-duty when suddenly, they feared for their lives, drew their firearms and hosed down a suspicious car in their driveway.
Too bad the car was empty.
And belonged to one of the officers.
Then the Darien Police Department did something even more shocking.
Darien police asked the Connecticut State Police to investigate the incident, leading to charges against the two officers for second-degree reckless endangerment, second-degree breach of peace and unlawful discharge of a firearm under state law.
It’s no shock that an independent investigation would find probable cause to charge the two officers for these actions.
James Martin and Daniel Ehret fired the live ammunition for unknown reasons on August 1st, 2015, but it took two months before charges were announced just yesterday.
The officers were at Martin’s house and destroyed Martin’s own personal vehicle.
Of course, this means the officers have now been placed on “paid administrative leave” which is the police term of art for a fully paid vacation with salary.
More significant than charges is the rare admission from a police agency that cops must abide the same laws as citizens AND that investigations of a department’s own officers. According to local TV station WTNH:
Darien Police Chief Duane Lovello says that the two officers involved were placed on paid administrative leave after the incident occurred. “The allegations leading to the arrests are disturbing. I cannot conceive of anything that would lead police officers to do something so profoundly dangerous and wholly irresponsible. This conduct is intolerable and does not reflect the professional values or the ethical, responsible, and moral conduct we demand of Darien police officers and their duty to the public we serve,” Chief Lovello said in a statement.
Local outlet Darien Times story released Chief Lovello’s entire statement, which revealed the car’s true owner and the location of the alleged crimes committed by two 10-year police veterans. Turns out that the town of Darien, which was founded in 1737, survived all the way until 1925 without any police force whatsoever.
Certainly, it’s questionable to think that either of these two officers deserve to remain part of any well-regulated militia after endangering their neighbors to blast their own empty car.
The Constitution’s Right to Bear arms certainly doesn’t give anyone the right to fire them willy nilly when hanging out.