Cocoa Police officer allowed to keep job despite previous arrest

A Cocoa Police Officer who opened fire during a standoff with deputies Thursday morning was allowed to remain on the job after previously being arrested, department officials said.


Patrick Kelly, 39, was taken into custody Thursday morning peacefully after threatening a woman inside his home and any law enforcement officers who responded to her call, deputies said.

Kelly did not aim at deputies during the standoff, deputies said, instead choosing to aim a gun at his own home. Multiple officials attributed the incident to an emotional crisis, with the judge mentioning PTSD.

Read: Deputies: Cocoa officer arrested after an hours-long standoff

After deputies coaxed him out, a judge denied a bond request by Kelly’s attorney, who tried to argue for leniency due to his clean history as a law enforcement officer and prior service in the army.

But Kelly, who had been with CPD since 2007, had been arrested for felony domestic violence battery in 2017, a department spokeswoman said. He was allowed to remain in his position after prosecutors dropped the charge.

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The spokeswoman added that Thursday’s victim was also a Cocoa Police officer.

“We are saddened by the events of the last 24 hours involving two of our officers,” she wrote. “Cocoa Police Officers are held to the highest levels of professional and moral conduct, and Officer Kelly’s actions do not represent the men and women of this agency who take pride in their job every day to protect and serve our community.”

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The department has suspended Kelly without pay, pending termination.

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