Chattanooga officer under investigation for sexual misconduct

Staff photo by Doug Strickland / Chattanooga Police Department Chief David Roddy gives a statement about sexual assault allegations against a Chattanooga police officer during a news conference at the Amnicola Highway Police Services Center on Saturday, June 16, 2018, in Chattanooga, Tenn. The officer is on paid administrative leave as the incident is investigated criminally by the Hamilton County Sheriff's Office and internally by the CPD.

An unidentified Chattanooga Police Department officer is under criminal and internal affairs investigations for sexual misconduct.

A female victim reported the alleged incident on June 13 involving an on-duty officer. The officer is in CPD's Neighborhood Policing Bureau and has been placed on paid leave pending the outcome of the investigation, according to police chief David Roddy.

"Let me be clear, the woman making these allegations deserves to be heard," Roddy said. "CPD is listening to her. The Chattanooga Police Department and me personally does not condone any type of sexual misconduct by our officers."

The internal investigation is being handled by CPD's Internal Affairs Unit. The Hamilton County Sheriff's Office is handling the criminal investigation.

CPD was notified of the alleged incident the night of June 13 after the victim reported it to the sheriff's office, Roddy said. He immediately opened an investigation at that time, he said. The officer was placed on administrative leave the following day and will remain on leave until there is a final disposition in the internal affairs investigation. That will not be made until the conclusion of the criminal investigation.

The officer has not been named because they have not been charged at this time. The officer was hired by the department in 2014.

"Any sexual misconduct allegations involving any Chattanooga Police Department officer will always be taken seriously and investigated with all due diligence," Roddy said.

The alleged incident is the first report of sexual misconduct against the officer, Roddy said.

This is a developing story. Stay with the Times Free Press.