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Wyandotte Police Officer Suspended Without Pay for 30 Days

The officer took a police rifle home with him to prove a point, but ended up being disciplined for it.

A Wyandotte police officer will begin a 30-day unpaid suspension on Wednesday after admitting to taking a police rifle home with him without permission, Police Chief Daniel Grant said.

The incident began on Oct. 4 when the department conducted a regular audit of its inventory, Grant said. At that time, the rifle was found to be missing.

Command officers on each shift notified their platoon of the missing weapon and that an investigation was going to be launched.

On Oct. 13, the officer confessed to having the weapon at his home and voluntarily returned it, Grant said.

The officer told police he took the gun to prove a point, Grant said.

According to the chief, the officer works the day shift and found the rifle in his patrol car when he reported for work in the morning. Rather than re-racking the rifle inside the police station, the officer from the midnight shift left it in the vehicle, which didn’t sit well with the officer in question, Grant said.

“He just felt that since it was left in the car when he started his shift, he wanted to see if anyone would notice that the weapon was gone,” Grant said. “He clearly understands that he was wrong. … He’s been told that if he’s unhappy with our procedures, we expect him to make some recommendations on what improvements could be added and we’ll look into it.”

Grant said the officer who left the rifle in the vehicle didn’t do anything wrong.

“If we know a car is going to be used in consecutive shifts, we’ve said it was OK for the rifle to be secured inside,” Grant said.

That policy has since been changed, however, based on this incident and on another involving two police guns being stolen from a patrol car while it was in for service at the Wyandotte Department of Public Services garage.

Grant said the suspended officer has no prior suspensions on his record. The chief said he doesn’t feel the public was at any risk by the rifle being at the officer’s home as he said it was locked up in a gun vault in his basement, along with other weapons that he owns for his private use.

Grant said criminal charges would not be brought against the officer as he returned the gun on his own accord.

While he’s serving his 30-day unpaid suspension, Grant said, officers will be pulled out of the traffic division to fill his patrol slot.

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sam beausejour December 11, 2012 at 04:57 PM
Richard millers cable program (another opinion) was packed with one hour of information on this subject. It stated the gun was missing for six months. The gun was returned after the threat was made of state police and A.T.F. Becoming involved and if the D.P.S. Had not been broke into the missing gun may never have been noticed or returned!
Rich malinowski December 11, 2012 at 06:15 PM
The gun was taken home by this certain officer, with 5 loaded magazines, also it was a new AR15, The officer only came forward after admin at WPD, came forward and stated MSP internal affairs was gonna be notified, and once it was turned over to them, prosecution could not be stopped,,,Question here was there an intent to deprive, Answer, yes qualifies for a full felony....period WPD is corrupt, and they only prosecute crimes that don't affect there own..
JP December 12, 2012 at 01:27 PM
I am totally on your side here. I think we should have been told his name and I think it is/was stealing. We would have been arrested if we had taken it to prove a point I am sure.
Steve December 12, 2012 at 02:33 PM
I'm guessing the commission did not buy his story but could not prove it. You take something home and lock it up in a safe you probably are not planning on bringing it back. 30 days without pay? He's lucky he kept his job! If that would of been any of us regular folk we'd of had the feds busting our door down in the middle of the night and would of been charged with possession of a stolen firearm and possession of stolen government property.
natalie December 12, 2012 at 03:29 PM
His intent was never to keep it. The State Police and ATF were never threatened. If he wanted to keep it he would still have it and noone would have known he had it.
Steve December 12, 2012 at 05:10 PM
How do you know what his intent was? Because that is what he said?
Steve December 12, 2012 at 05:12 PM
Agreed
natalie December 12, 2012 at 06:45 PM
Because I know him and I know he's not a thief. If he wanted to keep it he would have. Noone would have ever known he had it.
Steve December 12, 2012 at 08:24 PM
Well you go take a gun that belongs to someone else and lock it in your closet at home and when the cops come knocking down your front door just tell them you it annoyed you and you wanted to see if they'd notice it missing. I bet you get more than just a month off of work.
Steve December 12, 2012 at 08:25 PM
Has anyone heard what officer it was and isn't afraid to tell?
natalie December 12, 2012 at 08:46 PM
I'm not afraid to tell I just don't think it's anyones business. Wyandottes a small town I'm sure you can figure it out.
Jason Alley (Editor) December 12, 2012 at 09:08 PM
I appreciate everyone's civility toward each other on this story regardless of what side you're on. Just to be clear, though, as people are asking about the officer's name. We have the officer's name but opted not to publish it as there were no criminal charges filed and the matter was handled internally. It's the same way we would handle any work-related disciplinary action, regardless of the employer. Should the matter be discussed publicly at a City Council meeting, for instance, and the officer's name was publicly released, then that's another situation in which we would reassess our position. But for the time being, it's our decision not to name the officer involved.
Stewart peek December 12, 2012 at 10:40 PM
The weapon was missing since May. That sounds like theft. The officer claims he was going to return it on the one year anniversary of taking it? There is no way that is believable. A private citizen would have been arrested and jailed. Just like this officer should have been. This has hometown coverup wrote all over it. The same would not happen to a citizen.
Steve December 13, 2012 at 12:07 AM
Peterson? Cover something up? Anyone else shocked?
Tim Lock December 13, 2012 at 03:17 AM
Totally agree with stewart, this is theft, anyone else would be fired and served jail time.
Jennifer F December 13, 2012 at 03:32 AM
Stewart - in complete agreement with you. Also, are rules and regulations different from police dept to police dept? I would think as Policemen in the state of Michigan, there is one set of rules/guidelines! They seriously don't police themselves, do they? It seems a very clear-cut case of theft, any way you slice it.
Jennifer F December 13, 2012 at 03:44 AM
Verbal reprimand? Theft is just that - THEFT - he took a FIREARM home. Did it belong to him? No. Did he tell anyone he took it home? No. Last time I checked the definition of theft, its: "the act of stealing; the wrongful taking and carrying away of the personal goods or property of another; larceny."
Jennifer F December 13, 2012 at 03:45 AM
If 30 days without pay for theft is going overboard, I'm curious what you would have given as proper discipline.
Roy Sobocinski December 13, 2012 at 09:23 AM
I read the article believing the weapon was taken overnight and ordered returned within the next day. I wasn't aware of a 6 month timeframe regarding this incident. At the state law enforcement agency which I am an eighteen year veteran, we have stringent weapon policies regarding issuance and return of weapons, restraints, vehicles, tazers, radios, etcetera. Multiple copies of items issued to what officer are utilized. In eighteen years I have returned my issued gear at the end of every duty day. One time I forgot to return my handcuffs to our arsenal. I was 5 minutes from my facility when a lieutenant called me and told me to return them. I did immediately. I was not aware the officer regarding the Wyandotte incident had a rifle and 5 mags for 6 months, so my original response read "perhaps a verbal reprimand". For those who were privy to the intimate details of this incident, forgive me. End of my personal statement regarding the Wyandotte PD rifle incident.
JP December 13, 2012 at 01:47 PM
Were you there Natalie? If he didnt intend to keep the firearm why was he babysitting it so long? Were you at the station when this was discussed? How do you know the ATF was not mentioned as a threat? If you took a piece of property that didnt belong to you and you took it home and kept it under the bed or in a safe because YOU felt that was ok would that make it right?
JP December 13, 2012 at 01:54 PM
I totally agree with everything you have said Steve, and I disagree with Jason.........we pay his alary we should have every right to know who he is.
JP December 13, 2012 at 01:55 PM
We would be locked up Stewart, they would have kicked in our front door.
Jennifer F December 13, 2012 at 11:21 PM
Roy, thanks for clearing that up :-) And also shedding a little light on at least what policy is like on State level! I guess it's completely different on local police dept levels..? No idea, but apparently so.
Steve December 14, 2012 at 01:31 PM
Think the WPD will let me "borrow" some of their firearms for a trip to the range?
jc December 14, 2012 at 10:33 PM
did your friends at the wpd tell you what was taken and also the reason it was returned? also are these the same "corrupt" cops that got you out of racial imitation charges of a minor?
Christine Orman December 16, 2012 at 07:28 AM
Unbelievable, I'm just baffled that we are revisiting this issue again. It seems like it was just a year ago, but maybe a couple, that certain individuals were in hot water regarding firearms from the Wyandotte Police Department. WPD was purchasing new fire arms and the ones they no longer were using were purchased by certain individuals without it going through the normal process that 'any' equipment being sold to the public. And giving a fire arm to a retiring officer. For months it was debated while we all were schooled in the legalities of 'city owned property' . Are we to believe the officer in question was not aware of the seriousness of the handling of property...including fire arms???? Typically what happens when an officer does something wrong, like break a law that a civilian would go to jail for, the MSP are called in to do an investigation,{hahahahahaha} to determine if a crime had been committed, then when they're done with their investigation{hahahahaha} they turn the report over to the prosecutors office, where the prosecutor denies warrant based on 'insufficient evidence'... no crime.. no arrest, then the WPD will do their internal investigation to determine if any department policies were violated. Oh they are very experienced at sweeping things under the rug to keep it from the public. Now I could see having a bad day and you 'forget' to do something that would cause a violation. To that, I would say a write up would be sufficient.
Steve December 21, 2012 at 01:06 AM
That department is filled with more criminals than they put in the cells. Just go to DoHickey's in the summer and see how many are drinking and then jumping on their motorcycles and heading to their little clubhouse on Sibley. Oh wait, it's a club but if it was a bunch of bikers that were not cops it'd be a gang.
David Justice February 05, 2013 at 01:02 PM
That is exactly what I was going to ask Furpo, when WE do something (civilian) ends up on New Herald and public record to be used against you, when a officer does something there names are with held, this is total bull crap, I will send a freedom of information act form(for the public's benefit) and will post the answer when I get a answer. I will predict it will come back with some excuse why they cannot give the name, our records show up in public yet the ones WE pay to protect and serve are protected with a cloak of secrecy, its disturbing and disgusting, this is why used car sales people are trusted more then police now. All you have to do is go to home wrecking cops dot com to see what officers can get away with and get a paid vacation.
David Justice February 05, 2013 at 01:03 PM
Well put
Honor Thyprivacy March 09, 2013 at 07:10 AM
Sounds like this cop thought he got a free gun. Then pretended to proving a point after being caught.

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