The Morning Journal, Lorain, Ohio
Nov. 21—An investigation into the activities of a former Lorain lieutenant alleges the woman not only had inappropriate romantic affairs with her subordinates, but also a known felon, according to a news release from the Lorain Police Department.
Tabitha Angello was booked into the Lorain County Jail the morning of Nov. 21 after being arrested on a secret indictment issued as a result of the probe, according to jail records.
Angello has since posted bond, records show.
She is facing a charge of obstructing official business, three counts of unauthorized use of property and four counts of tampering with evidence, according to jail records.
She resigned her position with Lorain Police Nov. 10.
An approximately 100-page report was released the morning of Nov. 21 by Lorain police Chief James McCann after an investigation turned up allegations of wrongdoing.
The matter was brought to McCann’s attention after Angello’s live-in boyfriend, Lorain police Sgt. Kenneth Zapolski, the department’s SWAT commander, allegedly assaulted Officer Jesse Perkins on Sept. 21, the report stated. The incident was captured on video.
Zapolski was arrested and charged in the incident, which remains pending in Lorain Municipal Court.
McCann placed Zapolski on leave.
“Sgt. Zapolski was found guilty of multiple ( Lorain Police) administrative violations, to include one count of gross misconduct,” said McCann.
He retired from the Lorain Police Department on Nov. 3, prior to his pre-disciplinary hearing, according to the release.
A third officer, Carlos Trujillo, who was alleged to be having an affair with Angello, was terminated from his duties as well as part of the investigation, the release said.
“Officer Carlos Trujillo was found guilty of multiple administrative violations, to include three counts of gross misconduct,” the release said. “His employment with the Lorain Police Department was terminated on Monday, Nov. 14.”
When McCann was notified of the altercation between Zapolski and Perkins, the chief ordered an investigation through the Police Department’s Office of Professional Standards, the report stated.
“The decision to recommend terminating the three officers involved in this investigation was not made lightly, even though two of the three chose to resign in disgrace in lieu of termination,” McCann stated. “Nevertheless, a clear message has been sent to the officers of the Lorain Police Department and to members of the public, that such repugnant conduct will not be tolerated at the Lorain Police Department.
“I have taken proactive measures to rid the agency of any disgraceful conduct committed by my officers. My officers are here to serve the public with honor and respect, and I will continue to mandate the high standards that I expect from them.
“In the course of the investigation, OPS made other discoveries, which on their face, constitute gross misconduct on the part of Lt. Angello.
“These discoveries include Lt. Angello consorting with a known felon, having sexual relations while on duty, and having inappropriate relationships with subordinates,” McCann said.
As McCann placed Angello on leave, she was seen by officers tampering with her department-issued telephone, according to the report.
“As part of the notice of administrative leave, Lt. Angello was instructed that she was ‘not to tamper with, delete, or alter any information on [her] department phone or any accounts [she] may have attached on [her] department phone,'” the document stated.
Text messages on the phone revealed Angello had not only been texting inappropriate messages with other officers, but also a convicted drug trafficker, according to the document.
The felon’s name was redacted from the report.
Throughout the lengthy report, investigators found 44 counts of policy violations committed by Angello.
The officers who consorted with her were also investigated.
“Employees are expected to maintain the confidence and respect of the citizens of Lorain and other agencies and individuals who come into contact with the Lorain Police Department,” according to the report. “Due to Lt. Angello’s unethical conduct in this investigation, she has arguably lost the respect and confidence of the citizens of Lorain, LPD leadership, and her subordinates.”
As far as her inappropriate relationships with her subordinates, they too, were held accountable, the report stated.
As the administrative investigation continued, it was discovered that Angello, while on-duty, had engaged in sex acts with Trujillo, a four-year veteran of the police department, the report stated.
Trujillo was one of Angello’s subordinates on the night shift, the report stated.
“The sexual rendezvouses between Lt. Angello and Officer Trujillo occurred on at least three different occasions while on-duty, as well as other off-duty incidents,” the report stated. “It was further discovered that Lt. Angello was also romantically involved with a convicted drug trafficker. OPS also discovered that Lt. Angello had engaged in sexual conduct with this felon several times while on-duty.”
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