Unlike Atlanta, Miami (Florida) does not have a cop shortage. The South Florida tourist mecca is flush with cash from drug seizures and confiscating drug money to keep their police forces fully staffed. Miami police are known to drive luxury vehicles once owned by drug dealers, and Miami officers are paid among the highest salaries in the country.
As a result of all that dough, there are literally cops on every street corner in Miami. Now comes word that six Miami cops have been relieved of their duties in one of the worst cases of dereliction of duties in Miami history.
The Daily Mail reports that an entire squad of Kendall police officers were caught on video kissing women in broad daylight, drinking coffee, shopping, and disappearing for hours while on duty. Kendall is a prosperous suburb of Miami, located just west of affluent Coral Gables.
Using tracking devices and surveillance video, Miami-Dade Police Department’s Internal Affairs investigators caught the officers ignoring emergency 911 calls and falsifying police reports during a sting in 2010. The sting was first reported by CBS4 News in 2010.
One sergeant and two officers were fired, while 3 others have been suspended without pay while their cases are under review.
An officer, who is married, was seen on video kissing a girlfriend passionately while leaning against his police cruiser.
Officer Dario Socarras and other officers (all Hispanic) were caught on video drinking Café solo Espresso, a strong coffee beverage that is popular among Hispanics. Socarras and his fellow officers sat and drank espresso for 9 minutes while ignoring an emergency dispatch call on an unconscious 5-month-old baby.
Additionally, Socarras is accused of twice ignoring armed robbery and residential burglary calls so he could rendezvous with a girlfriend while on duty.
In another incident, Sergeant Jennifer Gonzalez was caught on video shopping at Target and Lowes while on duty. One sales assistant was seen helping Gonzalez load all her purchases into her squad car.
Socarras, along with Sgt. Gonzalez and Officer Jose Huerta were fired. The officers were disciplined in September 2012 following the 2-year investigation.
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