Ind. Officer Terminated for Inappropriate Conduct

CARMEL, Ind. --

After 13 hours of evidence hearings Friday, and additional meetings Saturday morning, a merit board decided to terminate Carmel police officer Greg Parks.

Parks defended himself before a merit board over accusations of inappropriate conduct on the job, 6News' Myrt Price reported.

Park was questioned about pulling over a high school student for speeding, but later going to her house to issue the warning.

"I Thought this would be a courtesy thing to go and inform the parents," said Parks.

Park, who was accused of breaking protocol and failing to respond to discipline, was placed on administrative leave in November.

At a previous hearing earlier this month, Carmel Police Chief Tim Green said Park showed a pattern of inappropriate behavior.

"Officer Park's conduct and his behavior is that in which I don't feel we want as a Carmel police officer, and my recommendation would concur with (former) Chief (Michael) Fogarty's, that we terminate his employment with the department for his failure to follow our procedures and guidelines," he said.

Among the accusations leveled during Friday's hearing was that Park parked his car on private property to watch a group of women play tennis.

"If you are engaging with some people in a park, actually getting out and speaking to them, I think that's good public relations. What Officer Park was doing was voyeurism," testified Lt. Joe Bickle.

Park denied the accusations.

"I did not stop to watch them play tennis," he testified. "I pulled in the driveway to turn around to go back the other direction, and while I was in the driveway turning around, I noticed that there were people playing tennis. But I did not sit and watch."

Park's attorney, Robert Turner, said previously his client did nothing to warrant termination.

"Here's somebody who committed some procedural errors and is up for termination," Turner said. "When you consider termination in this case, I want you to look at the history of the Carmel Police Department and see how many people have actually been suspended and weren't terminated."

Carmel Police Chief Tim Green supported the board's decision.

"This is an officer we did not want to keep on the department. He was not meeting our standards, he was not following our rules and regulations. And he wasn't somebody we wanted to continue to employ as a police officer, serving the community," Green said.

Park's attorney said he will appeal the decision and hopes to get a hearing in a different venue.

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