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State outlines reasons Capitol Police officials fired

Posted April 24, 2013

— Two State Capitol Police officials were fired two months ago after an internal investigation showed they allowed officers to use state patrol cars for off-duty security work and squirreled away fees charged for the work for their own benefit, according to documents released Wednesday.

Secretary of Public Safety Kieran Shanahan recently issued his final decision in grievances filed by Acting Chief Antonio Asion and Sgt. Benjamin Franklin after their terminations.

According to Shanahan's findings, Asion allowed Capitol Police officers to work at Club B.E.D. on Capital Boulevard in north Raleigh without proper approval and later characterized it as "official duty." Some officers were allowed to complete off-duty paperwork on state time, and officers, on at least two occasions, were paid by the state while making arrests at the club, the findings state.

The Raleigh Police Department and Wake County Sheriff's Office consider Club B.E.D. too dangerous and refuse to allow their officers to work there off-duty, Shanahan said. He noted that someone once fired a gun at a Capitol Police officer outside the club but missed.

"You placed your employees in harm's way without considering the danger and without ensuring they had appropriate workers compensation coverage," he wrote in his April 5 decision. "Further, you exposed the state to unnecessary liability by having SCP employees in this dangerous situation."

Shanahan also determined that Asion charged the club owner an extra fee for the use of state patrol cars, which was then deposited into the bank account of a specially created nonprofit. Rather than pay for gas or vehicle maintenance, money from the account was used to buy coffee, flowers and shirts and pay for the Capitol Police holiday party, the findings state.

In his April 8 decision for Franklin, Shanahan determined that he helped set up the nonprofit bank account and even paid himself a $773 "administrative fee" from the account. He also said he didn't believe Franklin's claim that he didn't know it was against the law to use state-owned vehicles for off-duty work.

Both men have 30 days to appeal their dismissals to the Office of Administrative Hearings.

Asion joined the State Bureau of Investigation two years ago and became acting chief last October, following the death of Chief Scott Hunter. Clayton Police Chief Glen Allen was recently named chief of the agency.

Franklin worked with the State Capitol Police for more than 18 years.

17 Comments

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  • whatelseisnew Apr 25, 5:30 p.m.

    "Rather than pay for gas or vehicle maintenance, money from the account was used to buy coffee, flowers and shirts and pay for the Capitol Police holiday party, the findings state."

    Yeah the pols get jealous when the worker peons try to steal. Only the pols are allowed to steal folks. Get that straight.

    I don't get the part about off-duty paperwork. If the job requires doing paperwork, then that should be time for which the person is compensated. I had a couple of jobs that required reports and daily filings. They paid me to do that as part of the overall job. Had they said I had to do the reports on my time, I would not have taken the jobs.

  • Always160 Apr 25, 4:21 p.m.

    Why does Shanahan have any findings? Why was the SBI not contacted to investigate these police officers? If their off duty work, money, and use of state property was an issue, why wouldn't they be investigated by the same organization that is asked to investigate all other police agencies? As for the use of the state vehicle, I am positive that if/when an arrest was made they would have to use a state vehicle (their police vehicle) to transport the subject to jail. If they took them in their personal vehicle, that would be kidnapping.

  • parkranger72 Apr 25, 12:25 p.m.

    Is there any state policies stating what the Sgt. and Chief did was not allowed. If so, look at all the museums nonprofit organizations. Who repays the state when a wedding party is at the Science Museum? That's my Taxes paying for the lights, cleaning crew, maintenance and the state's insurance to cover if anything goes wrong. WRAL, please take a look into the “Friends of the NC Science Museum”, nonprofit organization that file making over $7 million last year using state own buildings. And none of it was giving back to the state. http://non-profit-organizations.findthebest.com/l/298076/Friends-of-Nc-State-Museum-of-Natural-Sciences

  • Whatthehey Apr 25, 12:04 p.m.

    "an keep the peace, then I say good for them. Does not sound like anyone was forcing them to work there."

    What about "exposed the state to unnecessary liability" didn't you get? Also, their supervisor has responsibility to determine if they are adequately trained and equipped. Hanging out off-duty at a club & in parking lot waiting for something to happen is a very, very different situation than responding to an incident with all the resources (e.g. firepower, intel, training, etc.) of the Special Operations Division (e.g. Selective Enforcement Unit).

  • lazyrebel Apr 25, 10:18 a.m.

    So I guess that if RPD an WCSO says it to dangerous, what do they do if they get a call there? IF cops wanted to work there an keep the peace, then I say good for them. Does not sound like anyone was forcing them to work there. I see sheriff's cars at off duty assignments all the time, so whats the big deal?

  • Cock a doodle doo Apr 25, 9:04 a.m.

    "The Raleigh Police Department and Wake County Sheriff's Office consider Club B.E.D. too dangerous and refuse to allow their officers to work there off-duty"

    WHY on earth is this place allowed to continue to be open?
    I would think that statement alone would reason more police involvement.

    Anyways, it seems like the firings were justified now that the public has been made privy.

    Kind of ironic that the Secretary can keep his job though with all his assault convictions.

  • dare107 Apr 25, 8:38 a.m.

    I have news for you, LEOs want this type of activity to be exposed! To start with why would any self respecting officer work at some place like this to start with?? So all you Cop haters get over yourselves!

  • dwntwnboy2 Apr 25, 8:11 a.m.

    "The Raleigh Police Department and Wake County Sheriff's Office consider Club B.E.D. too dangerous and refuse to allow their officers to work there off-duty"- maybe they should be there ON duty if it's that dangerous. They ARE the police right? Aren't they supposed to handle dangerous situations? Isn't that what they are trained to do? So basically they are saying that club is so bad, even the cops are scared of it? WOW- the criminals have won for sure!

  • noneofyourbusiness123 Apr 24, 7:00 p.m.

    If only this story was as clear cut as this article makes it appear. I find it funny to see that so many people automatically assume these two officers were in the wrong. Perhaps someone could have investigated to find out who actually set up this non-profit and who instructed these two officers to run things as they were. Bet yet, if the state had a time keeping system that could have accounted for off-duty work, this situation would never have happened.

  • TellMeWhy Apr 24, 6:47 p.m.

    What...it is not permitted to use a state owned vehicle to transport your children to school, to shop at Ross Dress for Less, to take your girlfriend to lunch everyday. I had no clue. We never know who is observing our daily activities.

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