Maple Heights: Officer investigated after Facebook photo

6:59 AM, Sep 6, 2012   |    comments
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MAPLE HEIGHTS, Ohio -- A Maple Heights patrol officer is under investigation by internal affairs, after a Facebook photo of her went viral on the Internet. 

In it, Officer Susan Ferris appears to be napping while on duty.

Maple Heights Police Chief Richard Maracz confirmed Wednesday, that his department is investigating whether Ferris neglected her duties.

He emphasized that the department has a "no sleeping on duty" policy, with zero tolerance.

"Perhaps she should have told her supervisor that she was tired," said Maracz. "So that she's not potentially putting lives in danger."

The department's preliminary findings show that Ferris may have nodded off during her 8 p.m. to 8 a.m. overnight shift on August 22.

Maracz said that the internal affairs investigation is not complete, but if it's determined that Ferris was, in fact, neglecting her duties, she could face suspension without pay.

"That's crazy," said Maple Heights resident Julia Sturkey. "She's getting paid to sleep."

"It's embarrassing," added resident Shelley Murphy. "These days you have to be careful because you never know who might post something [on the Internet]."

Chief Maracz said that Ferris is a 16-year veteran of the department, and has had two corrective actions listed in her personnel file, but described both of them as minor.

Viewers on our WKYC Facebook page urged officials to cut the officer some slack. Many viewed Ferris as an overworked officer who probably deserved a break.

But resident Don Petty took issue with that notion. The U.S. Marine Corporal recently moved back to Maple Heights after two tours in Iraq.

"If I fell asleep on my post, people would be killed. It's important to stay awake and vigilant," he said. "Falling asleep on the job. Lives are at risk. I don't think so." 

WKYC-TV

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