MIAMI (CBSMiami) – A red light lie leads to an arrest for a Sweetwater police officer.
CBS 4’s Lauren Pastrana first investigated this story last July and only CBS 4 was there as officer Alejandro Ramos was taken into custody Monday. He is charged with official misconduct and accused of lying for a crash report.
Last February, Ramos was the driver of a Sweetwater police cruiser when it blew through a red light on the way to a nearby police scene on West Flagler St.
“I have the green light. He’s the one who is supposed to stop,” said driver Giobel Diaz Gonzalez.
Diaz Gonzalez was cited for the crash and the FHP report, at the time, said Ramos told investigators he “stopped at the red traffic signal and proceeded through the intersection using due care.”
But the video from the red light camera appeared to contradict that.
When CBS 4 started asking questions last summer, the police chief watched the video and an internal investigation began.
The arrest affidavit obtained by CBS 4 News says Ramos “falsified an official statement while on duty as a police officer to Florida Highway Patrol for the official document of a crash report.”
“It’s an unfortunate day when we have to arrest one of our own. When one breaches the public trust, one has to be held accountable,” said Sweetwater Police Chief Placido Diaz.
Chief Diaz promised to take a closer look at the department’s hiring practices when it came to light Officer Ramos had a history of traffic crashes while on duty, including four minor accidents in a five month span while with the South Miami Police Department.
Ramos resigned in lieu of termination from that department.
He’s currently relieved of duty without pay from the Sweetwater police department as his case makes its way through court.
“Cover ups are not tolerable nor will be the norm here in Sweetwater anymore,” Chief Diaz said.
Diaz Gonzalez’s citation was eventually voided, but he told Pastrana at the time he spent more than $1,000 out of pocket to fix his car.
According to Sweetwater Police policy, an officer must come to a complete stop at a red light, even when responding to an emergency call.