An off-duty Arlington police officer allegedly got into a drunken altercation with local police early Tuesday morning while on vacation in Key West, Fla., according to a local news agency.
Michael Wesley, 42, allegedly threatened a Key West police officer, interfered with an investigation and resisted being placed into custody after a woman he was with, who was “highly intoxicated,” was placed into protective custody, according to the KeysNet.com report.
Wesley wasn’t charged but might have been if he wasn’t a police officer, Key West Police Chief Donie Lee told the news site.
“Based on the report, I would have arrested the off-duty police officer,” he said. “Having said that, officers have a wide latitude of discretion in deciding whether to make an arrest. They don’t always use it wisely. This appears to [be] one of those cases. I’m sure the fact that he was a police officer factored into their decision.”
Arlington Police Chief Fred Ryan said Saturday his department will conduct an internal investigation into the incident.
“We’re taking this matter seriously,” he said. “The alleged conduct is not representative of the fine women and men of the APD.”
When Wesley’s companion was being placed into custody, he allegedly identified himself as a police officer, put his hands on one of the local officers and called a retired Key West officer, who he said he was friends with, to help him out, according to the report. He then stood in front of the cruiser and went into an expletive-ridden tirade, which included threats toward one of the local officers, the report states.
Wesley then resisted being handcuffed, causing one of the officers to draw his Taser, according to the report. He eventually was placed in handcuffs, and the local officers called Arlington police to verify his identity.
The local officer said that Arlington Police Lt. Ronald Kerr was “deeply apologetic and said he would assist in any way possible on their end,” according to the report.