It has been a rough week for the Panama City Beach Police Department. On officer is facing an investigation, another was fired Monday afternoon. The discipline comes after two separate incidents last week.
Panama City Beach Police officials say they are embarrassed by the two incidents. One involved a new year’s party, where a woman overdosed on ecstasy. There were as many as four off duty cops at the party, one a beach auxiliary officer. The other incident involved a shooting early Sunday in a residential area. Nearby residents thankful none of their neighbors were hurt.
Beach police officials say an officer stopped the car and then called for back up. Officer Allen Whitt responded to that call and then things got confusing. A passenger got out of the vehicle about that same time the driver began to drive away while the officer still engaged with him.
Officer Whitt fired four shots into the vehicle. One bullet traveled through the rear window, passed the passenger seat headrest and hit the windshield.
The passenger got out of the car seconds before the shooting started.
Luckily no one was injured, but neighbors say the shots were a rude awakening at midnight.
Beach police brass also spent the better part of the day investigation auxiliary officer Steven Price’s involvement in a drug overdose at a New Year’s Eve party. Apparently a young woman overdosed or went in a seizure. There were some calls made to the ambulance service through 911. The officer’s conduct on the phone was far less than acceptable. Patrolman Price has been fired. As for Whitt, he is on administrative leave with pay until the investigation is complete.