FREE e-Newsletter
Important News - Hot Topics
Get them Now!

Top News

Speeding Miami Cop Fired

September 14, 2012  | 

Screenshot via Univision.
Screenshot via Univision.

The Miami Police Officer who was clocked at 120 mph, pulled over, and held at gunpoint by a Florida Highway Patrol trooper while off duty has been fired, reports the Miami Herald.

Dash-cam footage from Trooper Watts' vehicle shows Officer Lopez weaving through traffic as he heads to an off-duty assignment. An internal-affairs investigation showed that Officer Lopez routinely exceeded the speed limit while driving his take-home vehicle.

Related:

IA Probe: Speeding Miami Cop Should Be Fired

Speeding Miami Cop Gets Community Service

Report: Trooper Who Cited Speeding Miami Cop Failed To Communicate Facts

Tags: Florida Highway Patrol, Miami PD, Officer Disciplined, Officer Fired


Comments (17)

Displaying 1 - 17 of 17

Len Mather @ 9/17/2012 5:42 PM

What vehicle was he driving that goes 120 mph? I hope it was not his patrol car.

Oklahoma Cop @ 9/17/2012 6:48 PM

It appears to be his patrol car in the photo...and the article said "take-home car.". (a term usually meant as a police car)

blueknight @ 9/18/2012 2:41 AM

I do not know any car that can go 120mph anymore. Sounds like the radar unit had a ghost reading. Must of needed a calibration. The Trooper did not want to communicate because the facts were already stretched anyway.

TruBlu @ 9/18/2012 4:13 AM

Going that fast is clearly unacceptable. Making him drive his pov home probably would have been a better response but I don't know the whole story... maybe the guy just needed to be fired. We have three different types of patrol cars in my department and any of them are capable of doing that speed so to say its a radar issue, is coming from someone who doesn't know what they are talking about.

jenninal @ 9/18/2012 6:55 AM

Blueknight our PD Chargers will easily go 120 mph. I am not sure what type of cars are in your area but I also own a personal vehicle, Challenger, that will easily hit 150 mph, so this guy could have easily been going that fast.

searcher5 @ 9/18/2012 7:16 AM

The old Caprice's were chip limited at 125, Crown Vics in our department would do close to 140, and was told they were chip limited at that, if it didn't come apart. The newer cars are even faster. So the Crown Vic in the photo could certainly do 120. So he has a history of exceeding the speed limit enough to make them nervous. So he could have cost his department insurance company millions of dollars if he boned up and killed someone doing it. Sounds like termination was the safest thing to do. I haven't read anything positive about this officer or his driving abilities, other than the department trusted him enough to take his marked unit home.

Dan @ 9/18/2012 7:47 AM

Crashes while speeding are a statistical reality among LEOs. There was a subsequent study where most all cop cars of all kinds were tracked via Fla's open records laws from toll booth to toll both. The results were supportive of the fact that most all drivers were grossly exceeding the posted limit. All machismo aside it is time to slow down and not view speeding on duty or off as a benefit of the job. Check out below 100. http://www.lawofficer.com/article/below-100/below-100

jflo674 @ 9/18/2012 8:23 AM

Here's a link to the video for those who haven't seen it.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hBHOTK4sQPY

Patrick @ 9/18/2012 12:13 PM

Give me a break. She is a highway cop that found a speeder. Never mind that she identifies in the video that it is a Miami PD vehicle. I know nothing about her training, but I saw the video and he was clearly driving faster than the rest of traffic. But not 120 mph faster. I have seen many officers without experience travel at high speeds to run down a speeder, and then claim the speeder was traveling at the high speed the officer was driving.
We clearly get amped up after 5 minutes of high speed driving with lights and siren. But, much of what I saw made it look like she was out of her element. She was just shy of hysterical, and I was not a fan of her body position when she was standing next to the center divider. It would not have taken much for the officer to push her back and over the divider. And for you tunnel vision naysayers, believe me when you are on that freeway center divider with vehicles barreling by, you are VERY aware of personal danger from the suspect.
Did I read in the story that she lied about some of the facts? And they still fired the officer? I'm sure he was driving out of policy, but I'm a little surprised at the punishment.

hershel cole @ 9/18/2012 12:42 PM

when this holy than thou trooper needs help from a lowly local cop, i hope they don't speed to help her!

Bob @ VA @ 9/18/2012 3:37 PM

For those defending the lead-footed Miami PD officer, consider how you would feel if he killed your son or daughter as he disregarded all traffic laws heading to his outside job. It was only a matter of when, not if, without relieving him of his badge and gun. A badge isn't a license to disregard the law, traffic or otherwise.

Darren @ 9/18/2012 4:14 PM

Such b.s. No wonder. Why this job is so f ed. Up...... Handle your business with out involving the press alphas hotels.....figure it out rookies ....

IrishCrusher @ 9/18/2012 4:30 PM

Fired!! Fired!! Seriously, what an overreaction. We know speeding is responsible for many lost lives but so is alot of other irresponsible actions. We don't charge someone based on the fact that we believe they may become engaged in some illegal criminal offense in the future. Therefore, justifying this Officers firing by saying he could have killed someone by traveling at a high rate of speed, is BS!! Someone should never be terminated over "what if's". Suspending him from the take home program, okay, no problem. Firing him, totally unjustified unless there is more to this guys disciplinary record than we know about.

John @ 9/19/2012 4:50 PM

Officer Lopez definately should have been fired if he was driving over 100 mph to an off duty job, especially if he had a past history of speeding. People who think they are above the law should not be law enforcement officers. They should probably be politicians.

IrishCrusher @ 9/20/2012 9:30 PM

John, when your caught speeding we will make sure that you are fired. Fair rules for everyone !

Dan @ 9/24/2012 10:04 AM

BlueKnight: Don't know what you drive, but our old Ford Crowns did 130 MPH or better and our new Impalas and Ford PI's do 120+. hershel cole: you need your head examined for sending a message like that. You may not agree with what the trooper did (which was HER JOB), but there is no place in police work for grudges!

S.S @ 9/25/2012 10:53 AM

This is an over reaction from everyone. Definately the officer for speeding, but not at 125. The trooper... well we all know why. She was going just as fast in order to catch a fellow l.e.o. to having him step out of the vehicle to handcuffing him. ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!! As far as his punishment goes a suspension at the most, but not firing the officer. Just seems a little over the top. But this is my opinion.

Join the Discussion





POLICE Magazine does not tolerate comments that include profanity, personal attacks or antisocial behavior (such as "spamming" or "trolling"). This and other inappropriate content or material will be removed. We reserve the right to block any user who violates this, including removing all content posted by that user.

Other Recent News

Video: NYPD Says Hatchet Attack an Act of Terror
A broad-daylight hatchet assault on a group of New York police officers -- leaving one...
Update: 2 California Deputies Killed in Shooting Spree
Sacramento County, Calif., Sheriff’s Dep. Danny Oliver was killed in this morning's...
Lenco Bearcat Played Critical Role in Stockton Robbery, Hostage Response
Lenco Industries, Inc., has announced that the City of Stockton, Calif.’s BearCat tactical...
Video: NYC Hatchet-wielding Attacker Might Have Terrorism Ties
The NYPD has issued a patrol bulletin alerting officers to be in a state of heightened...
DOJ Condemns Leaks of Ferguson Shooting Evidence
New details from the inquiry into Michael Brown’s Aug. 9 death — all provided by...

Get Your FREE Trial Issue and Win a Gift! Subscribe Today!
Yes! Please rush me my FREE TRIAL ISSUE of POLICE magazine and FREE Officer Survival Guide with tips and tactics to help me safely get out of 10 different situations.

Just fill in the form to the right and click the button to receive your FREE Trial Issue.

If POLICE does not satisfy you, just write "cancel" on the invoice and send it back. You'll pay nothing, and the FREE issue is yours to keep. If you enjoy POLICE, pay only $25 for a full one-year subscription (12 issues in all). Enjoy a savings of nearly 60% off the cover price!

Offer valid in US only. Outside U.S., click here.
It's easy! Just fill in the form below and click the red button to receive your FREE Trial Issue.
First Name:
Last Name:
Rank:
Agency:
Address:
City:
State:
  
Zip Code:
 
Country:
We respect your privacy. Please let us know if the address provided is your home, as your RANK / AGENCY will not be included on the mailing label.
E-mail Address:

Police Magazine