JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A Jacksonville Sheriff's Office internal affairs investigation obtained by News4Jax shows at least two officers were looked into for everything from allegedly distributing cocaine to possessing nude photos of a prostitute on city-owned phones.
The allegations were made against more than one officer in 2017 for multiple incidents with women, mostly on the Westside. In those incidents, documents show, the officers were deemed to be involved in the distribution of cocaine and the criminal act of “offering for lewdness."
Some of the accusations were "sustained" by Internal Affairs, but others were not.
Three lines in the internal affairs report indicate there may have been up to three officers involved, but News4Jax could only confirm two officers are discussed in the report.
The report includes recorded audio interviews with two women who say the officers either did drugs with them or took lewd photographs of them.
Part of a transcript of an audio recording between one woman and a JSO special investigations detective reveals the moment when she learns the men she met were police officers:
WITNESS: Are you for real? The police?
SPECIAL INVESTIGATIONS DETECTIVE: Like the real police.
WITNESS: They done drugs in front of me.
DETECTIVE: Huh? They done did what?
WITNESS: I’ve seen them do drugs.
DETECTIVE: You’ve seen them do drugs?
The conversation continues and the detective then asked the woman about photos of the woman where she is exposing private body parts:
WITNESS: Yeah, I had to do that.
SPECIAL INVESTIGATIONS DETECTIVE: You remember that?
WITNESS: Mm hmm.
DETECTIVE: Why’d you have to do that?
WITNESS: I didn’t have to.
DETECTIVE: Just for the fun of it?
WITNESS: I was drunk, it was my birthday.
The officers were also investigated for having inappropriate photos of women on their city-owned cellphones. But those allegations were not sustained by JSO Internal Affairs because it couldn’t be proven that the photos were not part of an investigation.
While JSO’s Internal Affairs did “sustain” the charges of distribution of cocaine and offering for lewdness, the State Attorney’s Office did not pursue criminal charges. The report shows prosecutors struck a deal with at least one of the officers who was offering assistance in a different investigation. The investigation was concluded in the summer of 2018.
While the names of the officers are redacted in the report, it does show one of the officers was linked to a different incident that News4Jax reported on previously. That incident involved former Detective Brian Turner.
Turner is a now-former JSO officer who was charged with removing beer cans from a JSO vehicle at the scene of a police-involved shooting in 2017. A News4Jax investigation into Turner’s background showed he had eight prior complaints at JSO during his tenure.
News4Jax crime and safety expert Ken Jefferson said Turner’s background should have been a warning to JSO.
“A lot of times that’s a red flag. You have to be very careful where you would place someone that has numerous complaints back-to-back-to-back,” Jefferson said.