You are a supervising administrative officer in a criminal justice agency. You learn that Officer X has reportedly been fraternizing with another man’s spouse. The man returned to his home and found Officer X in his bedroom with his wife. The man then went to your agency to file a formal complaint against Officer X. It is a violation of your agency’s policy for officers to fraternize with the spouses of other people. Officer X was reportedly off duty at the time.
Administrative Scenario: You are in charge of the administrative investigation. You must identify legal, ethical, and moral character violations that occurred. Review the following interviews:
- Interview 1
You interview Officer X, and he denies being in the man’s home with the man’s wife and fraternizing with her. Officer X said that Officer Y is his alibi. Officer X said that he was with Officer Y at Officer Y’s house when the alleged fraternization happened.
- Interview 2
You interview Officer Y, and he initially verifies Officer X’s story. However, under interrogation, Officer Y changes his story, and he admits that he was not with Officer X and that he lied for Officer X because Officer X asked him to do so. Subsequently, Officer Y is no longer an alibi for Officer X.
- Interview 3
You re-interview Officer X, and he continues denying fraternization and denies being in the man’s home with the man’s wife. However, when you tell Officer X that Officer Y admitted to lying for him, Officer X admits to you that he lied and that he did fraternize with the other man’s wife and that he was alone with her in her home.
In a 2-3-page paper, answer the following administrative questions:
- Did a fraternization policy violation occur? What is the purpose of having and enforcing fraternization policies? Why do agencies have fraternization policies?
- Did Officer X lie during the administrative investigation? Did Officer X encourage Officer Y to lie for him?
Is this merely an ethical issue, or does it also involve moral turpitude?
When does an ethical issue rise to the level of moral turpitude?
When does a moral issue rise to the level of criminality?
- If the media find out about this investigation, what will the public expect you to do about it?
- Sometimes, the cover-up is worse than the original act itself. As a criminal justice administrator, what is the best way to handle this kind of situation?