A suspended Florida police officer—who's been fired six times over the years for alleged misconduct, only to be reinstated—says he's the victim of a "witch hunt" and wants to go back to work, even though he's being paid $60,000 a year to stay home.
Since becoming an officer in 1990, Sgt. German Bosque of the Opa-locka Police Department "has been disciplined, suspended, fined and sent home with pay more than any officer in the state," according to the Miami Herald.
Bosque—who has been accused of "cracking the head of a handcuffed suspect, beating juveniles, hiding drugs in his police car, stealing from suspects, defying direct orders and lying and falsifying police reports"—was suspended with pay in May after he allowed a newspaper reporter to ride along in his patrol car without permission. (During the ride-along, Bosque told the reporter, "I'm an excellent police officer, but I break the rules.")
According to his lawyer, Bosque wants to return to duty "rather than sleeping late and watching telenovelas and 'Cops' reruns."
In 1990, he was tossed out of the Miami-Dade Police Academy after being arrested for impersonating a police officer, auto theft and possession of a firearm. In 1992, after graduating from the Polk County Police Academy, he was arrested for driving with a suspended license.
"Back then I was a big hot dog," Bosque told Herald. He became a full-time officer in Opa-locka in 1993.
In 1994, four people in a stolen car Bosque was following were killed in a high-speed chase that crashed outside Opa-locka. "Questions were raised about whether he was pursuing the vehicle against department policy," the paper said. In 1998, he was suspended twice for unauthorized police pursuits. The same year, Bosque called in sick with "food poisoning." He was on vacation in Cancun, Mexico.
More from the Herald's profile, "The South Florida cop who won't stay fired":
It seemed, in spite of all his past misconduct, there was nothing Bosque could do to lose his badge.
Opa-locka inexplicably dropped the ball on almost all the internal affairs complaints on Bosque. He was fired after police found cocaine in his police vehicle, but appealed and managed to keep his police certification and his job.
In February 2008, Bosque's questionable behavior took another turn when the state attorney's office began noticing that key drug evidence in some of his cases was missing. His police car was inspected, and investigators found an empty Smirnoff vodka bottle, a small bag of cocaine, crack pipes, Florida license plates, a pile of driver's licenses he had seized, along with a stack of arrest reports he had never turned in. But the state attorney declined to prosecute, saying there was no evidence of criminal intent, and Bosque was back out on the street.
As the Herald noted, the Opa-locka Police Department has a long history of corruption. Its current chief, Cheryl Cason, tested positive for cocaine and was placed on probation in 1995. In 2011, Cason was suspended after "failing to tell the city that she had had a crash with her city-owned car."
Cason called Bosque a "time bomb that has now exploded."