Two Chattanooga police officers recently were suspended without pay after disciplinary hearings sustained allegations against them.
Officer Michael Bolton, a crime suppression unit officer, was suspended for 28 days after he was found to have exhibited conduct unbecoming an officer, improper operations with a city vehicle and improper procedure with an informant.
In a separate incident, Officer Kenneth Freeman, accused of assaulting a Wal-Mart greeter, was suspended for 28 days after he was found to have exhibited conduct unbecoming an officer, improper procedure and excessive use of force, Chief Freeman Cooper said.
In Officer Bolton’s case, a woman told police that he gave her a ride home after she and her boyfriend were pulled over by a state trooper about 9:45 p.m. on Dec. 23, according to the Chattanooga Police Department internal affairs report. During the traffic stop, the woman flashed the trooper and officer to show she did not have drugs or contraband on her body, according to the trooper’s testimony to internal affairs.
Once they arrived at her house, the woman said Officer Bolton asked to use her restroom and told her his name was “Charles McCain.” Officer Bolton then made a lewd comment about her, she told police, and asked to see her again, at which time they made a date for later that night.
The woman’s boyfriend beat her before she left to meet the officer at 11 p.m. and, when she arrived, the officer asked what happened and where she wanted to go, she told police.
He then said he changed his mind about the date because she was beaten up and dropped her off at a closed convenience store, saying he would be back after she got cleaned up, according to the report. He never returned, according to the woman’s statements.
The woman was taken to Parkridge Medical Center to be treated for her injuries, the report states.
In an interview with investigators, Officer Bolton said he wanted to sign up the woman as a confidential informant but was “lazy” when he failed to call another officer to help with medical assistance because he did not want to get involved in a domestic assault case on Christmas Eve when his shift was ending. He also denied lying about his name, getting a date with the woman and making a comment about her body parts, according to the report.
In Officer Freeman’s case, along with the suspension he must be retrained in the department’s use of force policy and take anger management and verbal judo courses, Chief Cooper said.
Officer Freeman was accused of pushing a greeter at the Collegedale Wal-Mart in late December after the greeter touched the officer’s arm while asking if he could see a receipt. The greeter said he urinated and defecated on himself when he fell and also received a scratch on his right elbow, according to a internal affairs investigation report, but he declined medical treatment.
No charges were filed in the incident.