Chief: Yellow Springs cop committed 2 violations

A Yellow Springs police sergeant committed two infractions in an incident Nov. 5 when she took a camera from a resident who was videotaping police activity outside her home, according to an internal village police department investigation.

Tuesday, Interim Police Chief David Hale said he conducted a week-long investigation after resident Athena Fannin reported that Sgt. Naomi Penrod twisted her wrists and removed a camera from her hands outside Fannin's home on Allen Street.

Village officers were initially sent to Fannin’s home to serve an eviction notice. The officers were obtaining license plate information on vehicles in the driveway when Fannin came outside and questioned what they were doing.

Fannin started filming the officers’ actions and Penrod took the camera from her, according to the internal investigation report.

Five improper conduct allegations related to the incident were filed by Fannin.

The investigation concluded police acted properly when they obtained license plate information. Allegations that Penrod threatened to arrest Fannin if she didn’t stop recording and that Penrod called Fannin “pathetic” and “disgusting” resulted in a finding of insufficient evidence.

Hale said Penrod committed three violations — taking the camera “in a situation clearly not called for,” being discourteous to the public and escalating a situation.

She has not been put on administrative leave because of her personnel record, Hale said, noting, “there is nothing derogatory in her file.”

He said Penrod called him immediately after the incident and has offered an explanation as to what was going on at the time. Hale, however, wouldn’t offer a theory as to what caused the incident to take the turn that it did.

Penrod, who has been with the department since September 207, could be suspended, Hale said. The village manager will have to review the findings of the investigation and the officer has a right to ask for an independent review of the investigation, Hale said.

Read the full story in Wednesday’s Dayton Daily News.

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