An investigation’s been launched into a photo circulating on the Internet which appears to show a police officer sleeping inside a Cedar Rapids police car. Cedar Rapids Police included the photo with a news release indicating that the department is investigating the origin and authenticity of the image.
Cedar Rapids resident Tim Pugh sent the photo to police and copied media outlets. Pugh says he “assumes” the photo is legit.
“Especially if it’s real, it definitely needs to be looked at. We need to verify that it is real, but it’s definitely something that needs looked into,” Pugh said.
The photo was taken Tuesday afternoon in the Czech Village area, according to Pugh. However, Pugh said a Facebook friend who claims to have taken the photo wants to remain anonymous.
“They’re pretty much scared of retaliation…so they’re not coming forward,” Pugh said. In his e-mail to police, Pugh highlighted the sleeping officer as a “waste of tax dollars.” Pugh also questioned the department about their policy on break times for officers.
“I know of a couple (of officers) in the Cedar Rapids area who tend to hang out for extended periods of time in coffee shops or parking lots,” Pugh said. “It makes me wonder if they’re being legit by hanging out in coffee shops for two or three hours in the afternoon.”
Pugh recently led a group which opposed a tax extension in Linn County. Voters rejected the measure last week. In a news release, Cedar Rapids Police Sergeant Cristy Hamblin said the department is investigating the photo and trying to verify the officer and the date and time it was taken.