A video went viral last week showing, now former, Tampa Police Chief Mary O’ Connor being stopped by Pinellas County Deputy during a traffic stop. During the stop she attempted to flash her badge in an attempt to get out of the ticket. The Body cam footage was released, and it took the internet by storm. Tampa Mayor Jane Castor, who is up for re-election has since then requested her resignation. In Mayor Castor’s statement she stated this was not the conduct of the Tampa Police Department who holds high standards for ethical and professional behavior. Mayor Castor also mentions this hurts her especially as being the one to give O’Connor a second chance.
I requested and received the resignation of @TampaPD Chief Mary O’Connor. Assistant Chief Lee Bercaw will serve as acting chief while a comprehensive national search is conducted. pic.twitter.com/xRvkclaT8z— Jane Castor (@JaneCastor) December 5, 2022
O’Connor was pulled over for driving a Golf Cart on a Public Road without a license plate. Footage (see below) showed the whole stop in which O’Connor flashed her badge saying, “I’m the police chief in Tampa, I’m hoping you’ll just let us go tonight.” She then handed over her business card and told the Deputy if there was anything he needed to just call her. O’Connor did apologize where she said:
“In hindsight, I realize how my handling of this matter could be viewed as inappropriate, but that was certainly not my intent, I knew my conversation was on video, and my motive was not to put the deputy in an uncomfortable position. I have personally called the Pinellas County Sheriff offering to pay for any potential citation.”
[Source Tampa Bay Times]