Everett officer resigns after 3rd inquiry

EVERETT — A veteran Everett police officer resigned last month after a third internal investigation since 2000 resulted in findings of dishonesty and misconduct.

Officer Robert Franklin quit April 16 after being informed of the Everett Police Department’s plan to fire him.

The latest internal investigation began in October after a man filed a complaint alleging Franklin was engaging in an inappropriate relationship with the man’s wife.

Both the woman and Franklin denied having a sexual relationship.

The Herald obtained a copy of the 199-page internal investigation through a public records request. The documents were released Friday.

While there was no evidence of an affair, Everett Police Chief Kathy Atwood concluded that Franklin had been untruthful during the investigation. She also found that he conducted personal business while on duty and failed to perform a full day’s work for a full day’s pay.

Franklin was suspended and demoted in June 2000 after an internal investigation concluded he had an extramarital relationship.

He was again suspended and demoted in 2012 after acknowledging another romantic relationship. That woman told police that Franklin said he was divorced and that they had sex while he was on duty. He denied having sex on duty.

Investigators said that a voice mail he left the woman “gives credence” to her story.

Former police Chief Jim Scharf wrote at the time: “Your convenient lack of recollection regarding the event that prompted you to leave the voice mail is improbable and your denial of a sexual encounter with (the woman) while on duty is implausible.”

City spokeswoman Kate Reardon said police weren’t able to fully investigate all of the allegations in the 2010 case because the witness was uncooperative. In an interview Friday, the woman said she wouldn’t agree to a taped interview without an attorney present.

In a hand-delivered letter April 8, Atwood informed Franklin that she was planning to fire him.

She wrote that the latest investigation “revealed disturbing evidence of a lack of honesty on your part as the investigation unfolded.”

“Your actions in this investigation were particularly troubling because of the pattern of dishonesty,” she wrote.

The internal investigation also documented more than seven hours of telephone calls between Franklin and the woman in a one-month period while he was on duty.

Franklin has been a police officer for 27 years.

The city will refer the case to the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Commission, which will consider decertifying Franklin as a police officer, Reardon said.

Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446, stevick@heraldnet.com

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