KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A Knoxville police officer who has been with the department since 1994 has been placed on leave and suspended following a theft charge.
The Knoxville Police Department said on Saturday that Officer Kenno Carlos was charged with misdemeanor theft after an internal investigation.
On Wednesday morning, a Knoxville Police Department employee reported missing property from his locker. The department’s investigation found that Carlos entered the locker room while on duty in the early hours of Wednesday morning and walked out with the property.
Knoxville Police Chief Paul Noel talked with the press Saturday morning, during which time he called the actions of the 27-year veteran “unacceptable.”
“Obviously, it’s very frustrating. It’s a breech of of our trust. It’s a breech of the public’s trust, and it’s behavior that we will not tolerate at the Knoxville Police Department,” Noel said. “We have standards. We have a code of ethics. We have a code of conduct and he violated that.”
According to the incident report, a duty belt, a flashlight, a baton, a baton holder, handcuffs and a handcuff case, cone spray and a spray holder, a radio holder, a multi tool, a pocket knife, gloves, and a pair of Reebok duty boots were taken from the locker.
The narrative from the incident report states a cadet notified a sergeant that items were missing from his locker Wednesday morning. The cadet normally changes clothes in the locker room, leaving most of his equipment in the locker, but when he returned Wednesday after leaving his gear in the locker Tuesday afternoon, he noticed several items were missing. The incident report says the cadet’s ballistic vest was still hanging in the locker and his jacket was lying in the bottom of the locker.
Noel said that Carlos was cooperative with the investigation, adding that when he was confronted, Carlos admitted to taking the items and took officers to his home where the items were.
According to a spokesperson for the department, Carlos was questioned by Property Crimes investigators on Friday night and confessed to taking the property. Police said he was issued a misdemeanor citation for theft.
Noel said that Carlos was was placed on paid administrative leave with his police powers suspended, effective immediately.