Louisiana Cop Not Punished After Illegal Joyride in Civilian’s Dodge Charger Hellcat: Report
Being bold isn’t always a good thing.
Driving other people's cars can be fun, assuming they actually gave you permission to do it. Stealing a car to go for a joyride is another thing, but what's it called when a police officer does it? Such a situation allegedly occurred in Baton Rouge a few months ago, with more details coming to light recently, according to local Louisiana news network WBRZ2.
Their sources say that, after arriving on a shots-fired call, the police came to the conclusion that no weapon had been discharged, and a Dodge Charger Hellcat's exhaust had been mistaken for gunfire. Upon realizing this, Officer Kendarius Franklin allegedly decided to take the car for a spin without the owner's permission, and to the disbelief of the other officers at the scene.
After none of them apparently did anything to stop him, an internal investigation was initiated, resulting in Officer Franklin being reprimanded for having a low body cam battery. He was also issued a "conference worksheet," which sounds like the sort of packet a teacher gives you in middle school when they're out for a few days. WBRZ2's sources—who include Franklin's fellow officer who turned him in—say that this is the equivalent of a slap on the wrist.
Those same sources say that Officer Franklin should have been charged for unauthorized use of a movable, a more serious offense. Other civilians at the scene also say that this sort of behavior isn't helping with the neighborhood's reputation, with one person claiming that the area of Baton Rouge where the joyride took place, East Boyd, is known for being a "speed strip."
So while taking your patrol car for a cruise down a drag strip is one thing, taking a regular civilian's car for a ride without their permission is clearly an abuse of power. What's more, sources tell WBRZ2 that Franklin is a rookie officer—not a great way to start your career.
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