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Kevin Shadwick

The Fort Oglethorpe Police Department has fired a patrol officer for allegedly having sex with a teenage girl.

Chief David Eubanks wrote in a termination letter to Cecil Kevin Shadwick on Tuesday that he broke police department rules, including violating the public trust, destroying the respect of his department and leaving his post without permission. Eubanks fired Shadwick after the Georgia Bureau of Investigations looked into allegations against the officer.

Shadwick, 44, declined to comment Wednesday.

According to Eubanks' letter, the department learned about Shadwick's relationship with the girl after her mother filed a complaint on July 17. The mother asked for the GBI to investigate Shadwick instead of Fort Oglethorpe administrators.

Eubanks wrote that he fired Shadwick for the following reasons: He began the relationship with the girl when she was 16. Shadwick was on duty when they first met.

He "engaged in activities" with the girl while he was on the clock. This happened in "secluded but still public areas."

At least twice, he was with the girl when a dispatcher asked him to respond to a call. He was also unavailable to back up other officers because he was with the girl.

Investigators learned that, at least once before, Shadwick began an "inappropriate relationship" with a teenage girl while he was working.

Eubanks said Wednesday that he could not discuss the details of the investigation into Shadwick because it is a personnel issue, and city policy prohibits the chief from commenting. He referred the Times Free Press to City Manager Ron Goulart.

Goulart, who was out of town Wednesday, said he was unsure if any other underage girls might be involved.

Joe Montgomery, the assistant special agent in charge of the GBI's Calhoun office, said he could not comment on the details of the case because the Fort Oglethorpe Police Department is still conducting an internal investigation.

The GBI has not filed charges against Shadwick, though they ware waiting to see if Verizon Wireless will give them the officer's old phone. According to Eubanks' letter, somebody sent the phone to Verizon for repairs "some time back."

In Georgia, the age of consent is 16. However, an adult could be charged with a crime for exchanging naked pictures with somebody up to the age of 18.

"To my knowledge," said Greg Ramey, special agent in charge of the GBI's Calhoun office, "there are no charges at this point."

Shadwick joined the Fort Oglethorpe Police Department in November 2006. He resigned after Eubanks was fired in March 2013 but came back when the city manager reinstated the chief about nine months later.

Before coming to Fort Oglethorpe, Shadwick worked for the Dalton Police Department. He resigned from that job after facing discipline for refusing to abort a car chase.

"I always take pride in doing a good job, trying to do it right," he said during that internal investigation. "I tried to not violate other people's rights and try to do things correct."

This summer, when she reported Shadwick's relationship with her daughter, the girl's mother said that the officer claimed he didn't break the law.

"It is a shame," she wrote, "to have an officer on a force that brags that he knows exactly what he can do to skirt the law."

Contact Staff Writer Tyler Jett at tjett@timesfreepress.com or at 423-757-6476.

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