Montgomery officer paid for 18 months before guilty plea
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — A Montgomery police officer accused of sexually assaulting a man while on duty was paid for 18 months before pleading guilty to reduced charges and resigning last week.
The Montgomery Advertiser reported Tuesday that Deonte Hamner went on paid administrative leave after being charged with first-degree sodomy in June 2016.
He pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges of domestic assault and unlawful imprisonment on Thursday and resigned from the department.
Hamner was accused of forcing a man to perform oral sex at gunpoint. The man alleged Hamner detained him in a police cruiser for nearly an hour in June 2016. The victim also alleged Hamner then broke into his apartment and sexually assaulted him.
Court records show Hamner denied all accusations. He was placed on administrative leave five days after the incident.
Records show Hamner received an annual salary of $39,456 while he wasn’t working. Police spokeswoman Capt. Regina Duckett says employees can remain on paid leave until cases are resolved.
A grand jury indicted Hamner in May 2017. His sentencing is set for March 27.
It’s unknown how many Montgomery police officers are on administrative leave while they wait for legal or internal disciplinary decisions. The city said there are no records of officers on paid or unpaid leave.
In May 2017, Montgomery Police Department officer Amanda Millwood was arrested and charged with drug possession. She was fired less than three weeks later.
Police spokeswoman Duckett says Millwood was fired because she violated police policy even before a guilty plea.
AL.com reported a Birmingham woman was awarded $10 million in January after she claimed a police officer sexually assaulted her a decade ago. The officer was fired but never charged with a crime.
Alabama is one of 35 states where a law enforcement officer can claim sexual encounters were consensual.
Information from: Montgomery Advertiser, http://www.montgomeryadvertiser.com