Police officers fired after drinking on duty, chief says - FOX 13 News

Police officers fired after drinking on duty, chief says

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TAMPA (FOX 13) -

Two Tampa police officers have been fired amid accusations of drinking at a strip club while on duty.

Their supervisors are also in trouble.

TPD Chief Jane Castor called the situation embarrassing to her personally, as well as the entire department.

Everyone involved here has at least 10 years on the job.

Here is what happened, according to a report released by the Tampa Police Department.

Officers Antonio Ortega, 41, and Master Police Officer Paul Madsen, 45 apparently decided to have lunch at the Penthouse Club on Westshore Blvd. back on November 9, 2012 prior to their shift.

They drank inside, ultimately spending a total of about 7 hours there, well into their shift time.

In an attempt to cover it up , Madsen called their supervisor, saying he picked Ortega up and said they were in the field working.

It wasn't until hours later that a supervisor found out where they were.

When they were confronted, they were "highly intoxicated," according to the report.

The officers were not in uniform -- they were undercover, also in an unmarked car.

"As you know, the Tampa Police Department is a very ethical and transparent department that is well respected by the community. This behavior does not reflect the hard work of the men and women of the Tampa Police Department. It's very embarrassing to me personally, and all of the officers," Chief Jane Castor said.

The officers' supervisors were suspended in part because they didn't know where the officers were.

The chief says the officers were on administrative duty until noon today when they were fired.

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