Lakeland police fire woman at center of sex scandal

Lakeland police fire woman at center of sex scandal (Image 1)
Lakeland police fire woman at center of sex scandal (Image 1)

Longtime Lakeland Police Department crime analyst Sue Eberle has been fired, according to Chief Lisa Womack.

The findings were presented by City Manager Doug Thomas and Chief Lisa Womack to the Lakeland Police Advisory Commission on Wednesday afternoon.

“We have those that have chosen to deceive, deceive themselves, deceive their families, deceive their co-workers, deceive the organization. What's even sadder is the tarnish to the badge because of the deception and misconduct,” Chief Womack said.

Eberle, the woman at the center of the department's sex scandal, was fired for conduct unbecoming, failing to cooperate and lying, according to Chief Womack.

The Lakeland Police chief said Eberle lied about an incident last year that allegedly involved her having sex in a church with Steve Sherman, a former office of the force.

Eberle had been on paid leave since earlier this year after she claimed a number of consensual and forced sexual encounters between herself and several others on the force.

David Linesch is Eberle's attorney.  He said his client worked in “the ultimate hostile environment,” adding he is prepared to sue the city.

The chief also confirmed disciplinary action against seven other officers on Wednesday. Written reprimands were issued to Sgt. Ron Bowling Jr., and Officers Will Long and Ian Kendrick. Counseling was ordered for Sgt. Bryan McNabb and Officer Kevin Shiver. Counseling and retraining was required for both Officers Adrian Rodriguez and Scott Hutton.

In all, more than 13 individuals have resigned or been fired since allegations first surfaced.

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