Former Atlanta police officer convicted of aggravated sodomy sentenced

<div>Howard Portis</div>
Howard Portis

ATLANTA - A former Atlanta police officer, convicted this week of aggravated sodomy, has a history of turning off his police body camera before making sexual advances, according to the Fulton County District Attorney's Office.

Howard Portis, 38, responded to a burglary call at home along Glenn Street in Atlanta on March 25, 2021. Once there, Portis deactivated his body camera and forced the woman at the home to perform sex acts on him. He was interrupted by a call and then the arrival of a second officer arriving.

The victim did not say anything when the second officer arrived, but once he left, Portis offered her $250 for sex. That is when the woman fled the home to her pastor’s house down the road. That is when she told the pastor, fighting through tears and signs of sickness that she had been "violated."

Medics arrived at the scene and took her to an area hospital, where she stayed overnight. She was later evaluated at Day League, a Decatur-based rape crisis center. She later filed a complaint with the police department.

"I firmly hold the belief that law enforcement officers who engage in criminal actions that breach public trust must be prosecuted," said Deputy District Attorney Sonya Allen. "Such incidents not only undermine the community's confidence but also diminish the cooperation and faith citizens should place in the police force."

While investigating the allegations, it was uncovered that Portis had turned off his body camera to make sexual advances on multiple occasions. He has since been indicted a second time for this. His court date is pending.

"This office has indicted 31 law enforcement officers, including police, sheriff’s deputies and jailers, and federal agents," said District Attorney Fani T. Willis. "Rest assured that in this jurisdiction, police officers who engage in criminal activity and violate their oath to serve the public will face the full force of accountability."

Portis was sentenced to 25 years in prison and probation for life plus 5 years concurrent for violation of oath. Additionally, he can not have any contact with the victims or any witness in the case.