Six HPD officers accused of drinking on duty while being paid OT - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Six HPD officers accused of drinking on duty while being paid OT

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

Six Honolulu police officers face two separate investigations because they're accused of drinking at a bar on duty while getting paid overtime for a special police operation, the Honolulu Police Department said.

A police department spokeswoman said the six plain clothes officers accused of drinking on the clock work in HPD's district one, which encompasses the urban Honolulu area. 

The officers were getting paid overtime through a federal grant to work on an underage drinking enforcement operation, an HPD source said. 

The six HPD officers did legitimate investigative work for the first six hours of their operation, but then they decided to go drinking for the last two hours of their operation, and collected overtime for the two hours they spent drinking, a source said. 

Their underage drinking investigation was supposed to finish at 3 a.m., but they were done two hours early, a source said. 

So at 1 a.m., sources said, the officers went drinking at a popular Honolulu area restaurant and bar. The officers told their superiors the lieutenant in charge later approved paying them two more hours of overtime for the time they spent drinking, a source said. 

"All six had their police authority restricted last month," said HPD in a written statement Friday. "The department has opened administrative and criminal investigations into the incident."   

HPD said the lieutenant, sergeant and four officers accused of drinking on duty had their guns and badges taken away during the investigations. All six have been recalled from the field and reassigned to desk duty while the criminal and internal probes are underway. 

The criminal 4th-degree theft cases against the officers would be petty misdemeanors, for stealing about $100. 

The officers also face possible disciplinary action from the department's internal administrative investigation that could result in a variety of punishments, including suspension without pay. 

The police department relies on thousands of dollars in federal and state grants for several special enforcement programs, including enforcement of seat belt laws (known as "Click It Or Ticket"), child car seat laws and regulations banning the use of hand-held mobile phones while driving. 

If federal officials discover that federal grant money has not been spent properly, they can require the city to reimburse the feds for any funds that paid for questionable or improper expenses. 

Copyright 2012 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved. 

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