In a world of corruption, it’s never a good feeling to hear a story about a police officer who has been accused of stealing more than $1,000 from someone she arrested a couple months ago! Now, the officer herself, has been arrested, as well.
Officer Nicole Palladino faces charges of grand theft, official misconduct and possession of a controlled substance. Back in October, Palladino responded to a call about a driver who fell asleep at the wheel at a stoplight and wasn’t moving. The driver was still asleep when she showed up, and had the car in drive with their foot on the break.
Palladino was able to wake the driver up, but there was a strong odor of marijuana and asked the driver to get out of the car. Soon after, she found a clear plastic baggie containing suspected marijuana, a prescription bottle containing suspected ecstasy pills, a dark-colored rock shaped item, which was suspected to be heroin and a loaded .380 caliber handgun.
The driver was placed under arrest and another officer arrived for backup.
The other officer searched the driver, who had a large sum of money in several pockets, which they put into clear plastic PBSO prisoner property bags. Another officer witnessed the transfer of the bag containing cash, which had several $100 bills.
The driver looked at the property bag before being taken jail, and suddenly became very agitated that there was only $48 inside. He claimed he had about $1,000 in there and knew someone had taken it. A sergeant then conducted a search of Officer Palladino’s patrol car, where they found most of the money the driver claimed was missing. Uh oh! They also uncovered seven ecstasy pills that were in a plastic bottle. Double uh oh!
Officers reviewed Palladino’s body camera and witnessed her manipulating a clear plastic bag which contains the money. The video ends and then seconds later a new video is initiated with Palladino seen and heard counting 48 one dollar bills, then she completed her paperwork. Did she forget she was wearing a body cam?!
In a humorous twist, Palladino received the award of valor for her heroic response pursuing an armed suspect who was firing at pedestrians with a rifle earlier this year.
However, her officer history also shows she’s been reprimanded before for not turning her body camera on, in once case where another officer’s camera caught her using profanity towards a citizen.
Evidently this is becoming a problem, however, because she’s the third officer to be accused of stealing cash on the job at this police department in West Palm Beach, Florida, in the last year! OH FLORIDA.
One former New York State Police Captain said, “If I had a consultation with the chief, I would also take a look to review their training procedures and make sure that they are properly emphasizing ethical training.”
At least since the department is moving forward with arresting these individuals, it is sending a message to the community that police misconduct will not be tolerated!
Palladino has been on paid leave since the October traffic stop.
Original article and Image: West Palm Beach Officer Arrested; Accused of Stealing Cash From Suspect