Colonial Heights Police say they have arrested a former officer after discovering that he had downloaded videos from a suspect's phone onto his own phone.
The former officer, 30-year-old Bryan Glinn Drake, is charged with three counts of misdemeanor embezzlement and three counts of obstruction of justice.
The ACLU is becoming very vocal about this case. They want to make sure everyone knows their rights, especially when law enforcement has access to your cell phone.
"It is absolutely not the expectation…We’re just not going to stand for this kind of behavior,” said Captain William Anspach of Colonial Heights Police.
The department is being candid about the alleged criminal activity that cost Drake his job. Investigators say the private images of a woman were discovered when Drake was looking through a drug offender's phone
"This individual that was arrested after his arrest in March began looking through his iCloud account and noticed some discrepancies from the time that he was incarcerated when we had possession of his cell phone and took that to his attorney,” Anspach said.
In this case, the phone was already in custody due to a search warrant, but what if police don't have access to your phone? Can they still get inside?
“Police cannot require you to tell them what your security code is, because that would make you speak, and that would be testimonial, and you’re not required to give any information that would tend to incriminate you,” Claire Gastanaga with the ACLU said.
So how do you get around it if an officer asks you?
"You can simply say ‘I decline to answer your question on the grounds it might incriminate me and I'm not going to give you that number’,” Gastanaga added.
This case concerns the ACLU.
"In Virginia, you cannot lose your certificate that allows you to be a law enforcement officer for misconduct like this…In this case, even though I hear that the officer has resigned, that doesn't mean he couldn't become an officer in another jurisdiction,” Gastanaga said.
For now, it won’t be with Colonial Heights.
"It reflects poorly on us as a profession,” Anspach said.
The ACLU is pushing for statewide legislation to strip an officer's ability to apply with another department if he or she is found guilty of misconduct on the job.
Drake was with Colonial Heights for nearly two years. His trial date has been set for April 2 at 9 a.m. Petersburg General District Court.
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