The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department did not violate a deputy's First Amendment rights, when the agency fired him for maintaining a personal relationship with a known prostitute and heroin user, a district appellate court has ruled.

Deputy Emir Bautista was terminated in 2004, after his relationship with Shawn Crook became known to the department. Bautista had not reported the relationship to his superiors, reports the Metropolitan News-Enterprise.

Department policy requires officers to seek permission before associating with anyone under criminal investigation or indictment, or "who have an open and notorious reputation in the community for criminal activity, where such association would be detrimental to the image of the Department."

Read the full story at MetNews.com.

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