Miami police officer accused of yelling profanities at teen driver for cutting him off
Officer George Guillen pulled teen over outside jurisdiction, report says
The city of Miami's Civilian Investigative Panel is expected to recommend disciplinary action for an officer accused of cursing out a teenage driver who cut him off while driving on Florida's Turnpike.
"What's concerning is when a police officer is authorized to carry a gun and acts in a way that's driven by anger," said Jeanne Baker, who's a member of the Florida chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union. "We worry that it brings a real danger to community. Instead of public safety, we could have public violence."
The CIP met Tuesday night to discuss the incident, but didn't put it to a vote because there wasn't a quorum. The panel, made up of former police officers and citizens, serves as a watchdog agency and investigates allegations of police misconduct. The group can make recommendations to the chief of police.
Eduardo Tamborrel told Local 10 News that he filed a complaint with internal affairs after he and his 15-year-old son were verbally assaulted by the officer during a traffic stop in January 2015.
"Mr. Tamborrel stated that during the course of a traffic stop on the Florida Turnpike, outside the city of Miami, Officer George Guillen yelled at his son who was driving, 'Get the (expletive) out of the car right now, you're a (expletive) teenager,'" an internal affairs investigator wrote in a report.
"The officer began yelling things like they almost killed him," the investigator wrote after asking what the officer told him during the traffic stop. "He could be dead on the side of the road and who do they think they are? They must be cop killers."
Guillen told investigators that he was driving to work and conducted the stop because of the erratic driving. Guillen believed that the driver may be under the influence of drugs or alcohol. He denied using profanity, investigators said.
Internal affairs said the allegation of discourtesy was closed as inconclusive because there were no independent witnesses, but the allegation of improper procedure was substantiated because the officer made the stop outside of his jurisdiction.
Tamborrel spoke exclusively to Local 10 News, claiming that he and his son were victims of police misconduct.
"He was out of control," Tamborrel said when asked to describe the officer's behavior. "I started to get out of the car, worried that he was going to beat my son."
Tamborrel said his son had just gotten his learner's permit and was driving to school when the traffic stop took place.
"This could've been a teachable moment," panel member Douglas Mayer said. "He could've talked to the 15-year-old about how to handle this situation."
"As soon as my son got out of the car, he starts shouting at him that he's a cop killer (and) if he wanted him to die," Tamborrel said. "I mean, the guy was out of control."
Guillen never issued a ticket or even a warning for the traffic stop.
Other panel members, including a former police officer, had major concerns for the officer's safety.
"He's creating safety issues," Elizabeth Albert said. "There's no record of this traffic stop. No one knew what was going on or where this officer had made the stop. Something could've happened."
"When an officer is out of control, he's a danger to society and himself, as well," Chairman Horacio Aguirre said.
One member expressed concern over the fact that there were no independent witnesses.
Local 10 News looked into his personnel file, which showed three commendations for his police work, eight citizen complaints and six uses of force.
The Miami cop nearly lost his life in 2010, after a woman allegedly tried to run him over with a stolen car.
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