A Lakeland Police Department K-9 officer who was charged with DUI while driving a department SUV in the Panhandle last weekend has been fired, and the police chief issued a public apology.
Officer Chad Landry was terminated Thursday after a review of his Nov. 2 probable cause arrest in Fort Walton Beach was “found to support a sustained violation of both unlawful conduct and conduct unbecoming,” Chief Ruben Garcia said in a prepared statement.
Landry was in the Panhandle city for the U.S. Police Canine Association field trials, which end today.
Landry had been a law enforcement officer for 12 years before being named last December to LPD’s K9 team, where he was paired with a dog named Nox. Before joining LPD in 2015, he worked with police departments in Sebring and Lake Wales, according to an LPD Facebook post from last year. He was paid a salary of $57,894.
In his statement, Chief Garcia said:
The members of the Lakeland Police Department must uphold the highest standards of conduct in both their personal and professional life in order to maintain the public trust and confidence of the citizens we serve. When that trust is breached by a law enforcement officer, we must be held accountable to the highest standards as well.
I would personally like to apologize on behalf of the department to the citizens of Lakeland and those of Okaloosa County for the occurrence of this incident.