ATLANTA - An Atlanta police officer has been fired after first being accused of stealing $500 from a deadly shooting victim, and then found in violation of department policy,
After the initial accusation, Atlanta police conducted an administrative investigation into former Officer Keisha Richburg. Channel 2 investigative reporter Aaron Diamant has been covering the story since the shooting happened.
The investigation did not confirm whether Richburg took the money, but she was fired for not properly accounting for the money in accordance with the department’s policies, Atlanta police said in a statement obtained by Diamant Monday.
BREAKING: @Atlanta_Police Chief Erika Shields fires officer accused of taking hundreds in cash from a shooting victim, who later died. APD statement below. And here’s a link to our original story. https://t.co/FS7K2QWByw @wsbtv pic.twitter.com/RZp4tN5GOJ— Aaron Diamant (@AaronDiamantWSB) July 8, 2019
Richburg had worked in the department for about 2 and 1/2 years.
“Officer integrity goes to the heart of what we do here every single day,” Police Chief Erika Shields said in the statement. “It’s imperative the public have trust in our word and our actions. It’s extremely disappointing to see the victim of a fatal shooting be victimized twice by the actions of one our officers.”
The deadly shooting happened on Marietta Road in Northwest Atlanta on June 19.
Police arrested An-Nur Green, 43, for allegedly shooting Jamel Harris in the head because of an argument that turned violent. Harris, a married father, died at the hospital, authorities confirmed.
Leilani Collier tried to help Harris while he was hurt and opened his wallet to find his name, she told Channel 2 Action News after the incident.
She turned the wallet over to the police and let Harris’ wife know about the money. Police allegedly told Lanique Harris, who was pregnant with the couple’s second child, that there was no money.
"We have a mortgage to pay,” Lanique Harris told Channel 2 Action News after the incident.
“We have funeral expenses. He didn’t have life insurance, just that money would have really helped us.”
Once the administrative case is closed, Atlanta police said they will turn it over to the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office for review.
“We just think this needs to be looked into a little harder," said Atlanta police union boss Vince Champion. He believes Shields acted too fast before firing Richburg.
Champion went onto say he doesn't feel Richburg's dismissal was justified.
"I don’t think she stole money. Was it misplaced? Could it have fallen out if something happened? Sure, but I don’t think you’re dealing with a police officer that stole money for their own personal gain," he said.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution contributed to this report.
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