WRAL Investigates

Raleigh police officers at center of sexual misconduct probe

Posted February 8, 2011

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— Several Raleigh police officers are part of an ongoing police department internal investigation after allegations of sexual contact with a prostitute, sources told WRAL News Tuesday.

Speaking on the condition that they not be identified, the sources said the Raleigh Police Department’s Internal Affairs Unit raided the Southeast District Substation on Crosslink Road over the weekend and that several officers there were told to turn in their guns, badges and patrol cars.

Internal affairs investigators used GPS tracking devices and hidden cameras to uncover the activity, which involved sex with a prostitute who frequents Bragg Street in downtown Raleigh, the sources said.

One of the names tied to the investigation, sources said, is Raleigh police Sgt. Rick Armstrong, who is the president of the Raleigh Police Protective Association, a professional association that represents the interests of police officers.

Armstrong, who also is a member of the state Law Enforcement Training and Standards Commission, said Tuesday that he could not speak about the matter, on the advice of the Raleigh Police Department’s Internal Affairs Bureau.

In a statement Tuesday afternoon, Police Chief Harry Dolan did not address the specific allegations but acknowledged a “comprehensive” internal investigation into “improper conduct” stemming from a police officer’s complaint in late 2009.

Raleigh police officers under scrutiny Raleigh police officers under scrutiny

“Those findings indicated that administrative violations may have occurred and that they stemmed from voluntary interactions between a small number of officers and non-departmental individuals,” Dolan said.

“At this time, we are nearing completion of the investigation and its necessary follow-up,” he continued. “When all the available facts are present, appropriate decisions will be made concerning any personnel action that should be taken pursuant to departmental policy in response to administrative violations.”

Wake County District Attorney Colon Willoughby said his office is aware of the investigation and that criminal charges did not seem likely. He declined to say why or to discuss the matter further.

Raleigh Mayor Charles Meeker and Raleigh City Manager Russell Allen, when reached Tuesday, declined to comment on the matter.

Mayor Pro-Tem Mary-Ann Baldwin, who chairs the city’s Law and Public Safety Committee, said such incidents “reflect poorly” on the police department but that police officers generally do an excellent job.

“Anytime you have something like this you want a quick resolution and I would imagine our residents who would be impacted by this expect that,” she said.

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  • Journey985 Feb 10, 2011

    I wonder if RPD07 was actually one of the officers involved? Otherwise I am sure he would be on here, TRYING to find a way to defend this disgusting behavour by SWORN officers! Pathetic!!

  • vjayd Feb 9, 2011

    If there was no money or other services exchanged for the encounter, then it would not meet the legal definition of prostitution. Inexcusible, Immoral, Ignorate and Base but not Illegal.

  • mickeyusmc728 Feb 9, 2011

    Unless they say they did have sex with them then they should be let go. we them use for other reasons then sex (information). Unless you are a police officer you shouldn't judge. Another IA witch hunt.

  • Journey985 Feb 9, 2011

    "Anytime you have something like this you want a quick resolution and I would imagine our residents who would be impacted by this expect that,” Why a quick resolution? Do we not see episode after episode of COPS on tv running the same sting as the Internal Affairs officers did to catch these guys? The female officer goes out, sets up the "John" looking for sex, then he is busted and charged. Please Colin, explain to me how this is any different? These were officers ON DUTY caught on camera! I am sure there are some that would like a "quick" resolution, but there needs to be a lot more investigating by the DA's office here!

  • gingerlynn Feb 9, 2011

    Sources tell ABC11 the investigation centers around allegations the officers had sex with a known prostitute.

    The same sources tell ABC11 the officers are Sgt. Rick J. Armstrong, Chris L. Hill, Mike C. Rominski, and Stephen D. Hinnant

  • wakemom Feb 9, 2011

    "why should the cops pay more than the average citizen" - Because they have taken an OATH to uphold the laws of this state and this nation. They KNOWINGLY broke that oath and the law...THAT's why they should be held to a higher standard. Not to mention, have you seen some of the protitures over there in SE Raleigh? (as seen in news stories on WRAL) Ewwww!!! WOnder if any are married and how their spouses feel about their husbands being on RPD Goes Wild?
    Journey985

    i live in se raleigh and i cannot tell you what one looks like. this must been a late night booty call by the officers! and trust there are a lot of white officers that work at that station. s/n there is also a very good cleaners over there!! anyway i cannot believe these officers are getting a pass from majority of you people up here; yet you're talking more smack about it being in se raleigh area and about the prostitute. smh!

  • redapace Feb 9, 2011

    Post the photos of the Johns.

  • NCAries Feb 9, 2011

    then the City should have nothing to say.. what you do on your time.. if legal. is your business..
    cuffusion

    Tell that to Bill Clinton...

  • blahblahblah Feb 9, 2011

    Cuffusion - the article says they are accused of sexual contact with a prostitute. Prostituion and using a prostitute are both illegal. If guilty, they broke the law they are sworn to uphold. How can you say "they broke no statue or ordinance"?

  • cuffusion Feb 9, 2011

    From the article its clear that while they may have acted in a manner which did not reflect favorably on the Department they broke no statue or ordinance.. so why is this community being harsh.. all of you have done exactly the same thing.. I remember a wise man once said "Ye who is without sin cast the first stone".

    They cant be terminated if any other city employee would not be excused for the same act.. it violates the equal protection clause of the Constitution.. and.. if whatever the offensive behavior was happened outside the scope of their duties.. then the City should have nothing to say.. what you do on your time.. if legal. is your business..

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