HIALEAH, Fla. – A West Miami police officer is out of a job after he was accused of abusing the department’s trust with taxpayers’ money for his uniform, and administrators decided that his response to a surveillance video stank.
Edgar Diaz was working as a West Miami Police Department officer when he received a uniform replacement waiver from his bosses in 2018. He alleged he had pooped in his pants when he used it at Lou’s Police & Security Equipment, 7815 W 4th Ave., in Hialeah.
The trouble is anonymous accusations reached the department that the four tailored uniform slacks and the tactical police uniform shoes that Diaz retrieved from the police supply store on Oct. 20, 2018, were for his father.
An internal affairs investigation into the alleged theft began in January 2019. Investigators found store surveillance video showing that Diaz’s father walked into a changing room to try on the slacks, and he even had a store employee fit them for him. The video also shows Diaz helping his father to try on the shoes.
When investigators approached Diaz with the evidence, Diaz claimed that, “Upon arrival, he soiled his clothing while flatulating, expelling liquid and solid fecal matter in his underwear." This is why his father, and not him, was trying on the department’s pants.
“Diaz was extremely descriptive on how bad the soiling his pants and undergarments were,” an investigator wrote in the report. "He asked his father to try on the pants for him and have them altered and fitted.”
Investigators determined there were a few glaring issues with Diaz’s explanation.
There are obvious height and size differences between Diaz and his father, Pedro Diaz. The officer wears a size 10.5 shoe, but the shoes the department purchased were a size 12. There is no evidence that Diaz attempted to go to the store’s bathroom to clean himself, or that he had a sense of urgency to leave the store.
“He stated that he did not use the bathroom facilities to clean himself up even though he could feel the soiling to be wet and solid," an investigator wrote. “He could not provide a reasonable or logical reason as to why he didn’t attempt to do so.”
On Jan. 31, 2019, Diaz was relieved of duty and was ordered to return the items valued at $234.80. Investigators reported he returned the items with the tags still attached. The State Attorney’s Office later decided that there was insufficient evidence to support a charge of theft.
The internal affairs investigation wrapped up last month. Instead of being fired, as the administration recommended, Diaz rushed to submit his resignation.
Local 10 News contacted Diaz and his attorney, but they both refused to comment.