Two Miramar police officers arrested & charged with illegal search

(SUN SENTINEL)   Two Miramar police officers were released from jail early Wednesday after each posted $1,000 bond on charges they illegally searched a drug suspect’s home and falsified reports.

Officer Jean Paul Jacobi, 38, and Detective Jennifer Conger, 34, turned themselves in to authorities at about noon Tuesday. They were jailed on one count each of official misconduct, falsifying a public or court record, criminal mischief and trespassing.

They have been suspended without pay, and it wasn’t clear Wednesday night whether they had attorneys.  Their arrests came almost seven months after another officer told Internal Affairs investigators about the alleged unlawful search.

The search occurred in July after Jacobi arrested Reginald Beldor, 33, of Miramar, on a marijuana possession charge during a traffic stop, an arrest affidavit said. At the police station, Beldor refused to let officers search his home.

Conger, Jacobi and two other officers visited Beldor’s apartment, but no one came to the door. Conger then provided Beldor’s keys to Jacobi, who used the keys to illegally enter Beldor’s home, police said. Jacobi and Conger used the keys to open a locked bedroom, where marijuana plants were found inside a closet, the affidavit said.

Another officer present during the search told officials Jacobi asked him to use bolt cutters to open Beldor’s locked briefcase. The officer contacted Internal Affairs investigators at 2 a.m. the next day, and a sergeant also at Beldor’s home corroborated the allegations, officials said.

Officials said Jacobi, with Conger’s knowledge, falsified reports about the search, saying the apartment door was open when officers arrived, and that the smell of marijuana was coming from the residence.

Marijuana charges against Beldor have since been dropped, records show.

Beldor previously was arrested in a marijuana case, state records show. He pleaded guilty to selling, delivering or possessing marijuana with intent to use in 2007 in Miami-Dade County. Because of a pretrial agreement, a formal conviction was withheld from his record.

Staff writers Danielle A. Alvarez and Sofia Santana contributed to this report.

jcortega@tribune.com or 954-356-4701

http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/broward/miramar/fl-miramar-officers-bail-update-20110216,0,1718822.story

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