Monroe County Deputy Jason Strong was taken into federal custody today at his Miami home, indicted on charges of money laundering and conspiracy to defraud the federal government, sheriff’s spokeswoman Becky Herrin said.
Strong was a “Deputy In Country Manager” in Baghdad with defense contractor Security Operations Consulting from January of 2005 to April of 2008 and is reportedly accused of conspiring to steal and sell government property, Herrin said.
Captain Don Hiller, Commander of the Sheriff’s Office Internal Affairs Division was in Miami today standing by to assist as federal authorities arrested Strong and served a search warrant at his home. A large amount of property was seized from the home as the federal investigation continues.
Two Monroe County Sheriff’s deputies have been issued notices to appear in court on traffic related charges. Today, Florida Highway Patrol arrested Darnell Durham and Kyle Page, issuing them notices to appear in court. Durham is charged with reckless driving, criminal mischief and giving false information during a law enforcement investigation;… Page is charged with reckless driving.
The charges stem from an incident described by FHP as “road rage” that took place February 19th on the 18 mile stretch in Miami-Dade County, while the two deputies were off duty.
“We are extremely disappointed that our officers would be involved in an incident like this,” said Sheriff Rick Ramsay. “We are also conducting our own investigation into this incident. We feel strongly that officers who break the law should be held accountable for their actions,” he said.
“We also feel it is important to be open and honest with the public about incidents such as this one, which is why we are issuing this press release,” said Sheriff Ramsay. “As Sheriff, I will always strive to be transparent in my actions, and the actions and activities of this agency.”
The Monroe County Sheriff’s Office is conducting an internal review of the incident. The two officers have been told they are not allowed to carry a gun or their law enforcement credentials except while they are on duty for the duration of the investigation.
Durham has been with the Sheriff’s Office since August of 2005. Page has been with the Sheriff’s Office since January of 2007. Both men work as road patrol deputies for District 7 in the Upper Keys.
Otero has paid with his job and his family. He told a judge he’s now trying to repair his life.
Otero had no comment after his plea deal hearing Friday. However, he told the judge that he made a mistake.
Part of his sentence will be supervised probation and counseling for sex addiction.
Melbourne police began to track Otero in May 2012, using surveillance and dash board cameras.
Investigators said Otero had sex with at least four prostitutes while on the job as a Melbourne police officer.
Surveillance video claimed to show Otero picking up and dropping off prostitutes.
“I would like to apologize to everyone involved in this case, I never meant for any of this to happen, I never meant to put my wife, my family through any of this. I never been in trouble,” Otero said.
“A law enforcement officer is out there, supposed to be enforcing the law, protecting the public, etcetera and whether he has an addiction or not, he’s out there taking advantage of some of the most vulnerable that we have out there on the street,” said Assistant State Attorney Wayne Holmes.
As a part of the plea, Otero had to surrender his certification as a police officer, keeping him out of law enforcement.
Otero and his attorney were successful in begged the judge to allow him to keep his driver’s license, that’s because his attorney said Otero is trying to start a trucking business.