The Chattanooga Police Department has terminated an officer who was arrested by the Sheriff's Office last November on charges of sexual battery and kidnapping.
The CPD said it did so after the Internal Affairs Unit concluded its investigation into an allegation of misconduct involving the officer in CPD's Neighborhood Policing Bureau that occurred in November, 2018. T
Benjamin Dessalines was terminated on Thursday.
The Chattanooga Police Department will be requesting decertification from the Tennessee Peace Officer Standards & Training (P.O.S.T) Commission for Dessalines, it was stated.
Sustained allegations against Dessalines were insubordination, cooperation during an internal investigation, untruthfulness, improper procedure and criminal offenses.
The internal investigation began on Nov.
27, 2018. CPD launched the Internal Affairs investigation after a victim filed a report with CPD’s Special Victims Unit that same day.
Police said, "Due to the victim’s statement identifying the suspect as a CPD Officer and to remove any suggestion regarding a conflict of interest, CPD immediately turned over the criminal investigation to the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office per the direction of the Hamilton County District Attorney. CPD relieved Officer Dessalines of duty on Wednesday, Nov. 28, 2018. He was to remain on administrative leave until a final disposition in the Internal Affairs investigation was reached.
On Nov. 29, 2018 the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office arrested Dessalines. He is awaiting a hearing in General Sessions Court.
“There are hundreds of Chattanooga Police Officers who do great work every day to uphold the mission of the Chattanooga Police Department and build trust with community members,” said Chief David Roddy. “Investigations into conduct of this magnitude are the result of choices and actions of a few and do not represent the values of the department and the many officers who serve the Chattanooga community.”
Dessalines was hired by CPD in 2016.