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False Police Report Leads to Arrest of FL Schools Officer

False Police Report Leads to Arrest of FL Schools Officer

Palm Beach County School District Police officer Leartis Vereen is charged with filing a false police report about the theft of his service weapon in Dec. 2010.

The Orlando Sentinal via YellowBrix

March 02, 2011

PALM BEACH COUNTY – A 15-year veteran Palm Beach County school district police officer was arrested Monday and charged with filing a false report about the theft of his weapon, according to the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office.

On Dec. 31, Leartis Vereen, 53, told deputies his Royal Palm Beach home had been broken into that same day and that his police-issued duty belt was among the items stolen, investigators said.

The belt contained a department-issued Glock handgun, handcuffs, a police radio, and [pepper] spray, the theft report stated.

However, a check of stolen firearms records showed the missing Glock model 22 with a serial number FXS360 was recovered during a robbery attempt and held as evidence by West Palm Beach police on Dec. 27, four days before Vereen reported it stolen, according to investigator Gabriel Carino.

Confronted with these facts, Vereen changed his story to say the weapon, belt and other equipment were actually stolen on Dec. 27 and that he had tried to recover them on his own by putting “word out on the street,” Carino said.

With no success, Vereen decided Dec. 31 to add the missing gun and duty belt to the list of other items stolen from his home, according to the incident report.

“He has been reassigned to a non-school, non-police position within the school [system] Police Department pending the outcome of the criminal case and the just-launched personnel investigation,” school district spokesman Nat Harrington said. “This is standard procedure for this type of allegation.”

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