Officer resigns after investigation

No charges from accusation of entering woman's Columbia office

April 28, 2006|By MELISSA HARRIS | MELISSA HARRIS,SUN REPORTER

A Howard County police-dog officer, who was accused of repeatedly, illegally entering the second-floor office of a woman believed to be his wife, has resigned after Police Department and criminal probes into the incidents. He was accused of entering the office at least five times since August.

A heavily redacted police report first obtained by The Washington Post states that Pfc. Patrick W. Eckley scared an employee of the Columbia company about 3:30 a.m. Nov. 8, when the employee found Eckley in the office. Eckley, who has won several awards, was on duty that night and told the employee that "he had found a door ajar downstairs and that he was checking the building" in the 7000 block of Samuel Morse Drive, according to the report.

Howard County State's Attorney Timothy McCrone said that prosecutors did not file criminal charges because of insufficient evidence. Eckley resigned his post March 15, said Sherry Llewellyn, a spokeswoman for the Police Department. She would not comment further because it is a personnel matter.

Eckley said yesterday that he had no comment.

In the report, the woman, whose name was blacked out, refers to the officer as her "ex-husband," but records confirming a divorce were not found.

She "stated that she believes that her ex-husband was just doing his job when he located an open [door] and checked the building," the report says.

melissa.harris@baltsun.com

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