Lt. Diana Lopez was a public information officer for the Tucson Police Department when she sent a series of raunchy photos and videos, which now have apparently all been deleted, to a lower-level officer whom she was in a relationship with.
Lopez sent them between May 2011 and August 2011, according to a departmental report, and the officer, whose name has not been released, allegedly shared them with co-workers. The department then received anonymous letters tipping them off, prompting it to launch an investigation. The internal probe could not find any of the photos or the video in question, but concluded "there is no doubt they exist."
Piccarreta said someone in the department likely wanted "to cause Diana problems." Lopez was demoted to patrol sergeant.
"Lopez used extremely poor judgement in sending these images undermining her credibility as a commander," Assistant Chief Kathleen Robinson said, according to the Daily Star. "Her actions have negatively affected not only her reputation, but the reputation and mission of the Tucson Police Department."
"Most police departments are a male locker room mentality," he added.
Lopez could appeal the decision to the court, or sue the city for violating her privacy, Piccarreta claims, or she could put the whole embarrassing experience behind her. "She's mulling over all the options," he says, but the ordeal has taken a serious personal toll.
"She let him into her life," Piccarreta says of the now ex-boyfriend. "It'll be a long time before she lets someone else in."
Lopez is far from the first woman who has encountered trouble at work for risque photos that went public. Last year, New York guidance counselor Tiffany Webb was fired after lingerie shots that were taken when she was a teenager kept reappearing on the Web, 12 years later. Webb is currently suing the school system for wrongful termination, sex discrimination and violation of her First Amendment rights.
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