NAPLES, Fla.- Caught on camera, corporals from the Naples jail, failing to supervise inmates in a weekend work program and allowing them to break the rules! We're talking about shopping, talking on the phone, and even loafing, when they should be working! Tonight, two corporals are off the force, a third has been reprimanded.
A private investigator, looking into another case, initially prompted this investigation a year ago. The inmates were supposed to spend the weekend doing work, like clean-up here at the White Elephant on Pine Ridge Road; but instead, the internal investigation reveals, the corporals let them sit inside of these air conditioned buses and shop at a nearby 7-Eleven. All things against the rules.
It wasn't something a private investigator expected to catch on surveillance in June 2012, while investigating a worker's compensation fraud claim.
"I remember it was a hot day and the participants, or more than half of the participants never got off the bus; The bus ran the entire time," said President of Oynx Investigations David Tate.
The investigation led to the firing of two Naples jail deputies. Corporal Luis Lopez and Kristopher Favillo were supposed to supervise inmates on the weekend work program. According to an internal investigation, the participants were supposed to do "clean-up" around the area of "White Elephant," a thrift store associated with Naples Community Hospital.
"The deputies of the working detail- the ones that should be supervising them, allowed this to happen. They sat in the air condition and didn't supervise a work detail like it should have been done," said Tate.
A camera also caught these four women quote "were permitted to meander about, lay in the shade or on the bus."
The sheriff's office says the corporals also took participants to a nearby 7-Eleven, a non-scheduled stop that was not related to the work assignments for the day. The investigation found "while at 7-Eleven several of the inmates purchased drink and food items.
"They were highly, highly, very upset that members of their staff would act in that matter; it's a waste of tax payer dollars, that's the way I looked at it," said Tate.
The rules clearly state inmates are not allowed to go into a store and purchase anything, not allowed to have cell phones, not leave the vicinity of a work site and must stay within sight of an officer.
Sheriff Kevin Rambosk says the deputies violated the rules which is not tolerated. The investigation also says these corporals were not given proper training on this program. A third deputy was reprimanded for allowing weekenders to shop at a convenience store during a separate detail.