‘It Was Poor Judgement': Tampa's Police Chief Apologizes for Flashing Badge During Golf Cart Traffic Stop

Mary O'Connor said her handling of the matter “could be viewed as inappropriate”

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The Tampa Police Department is addressing an incident caught on camera showing Chief Mary O'Connor flashing her police badge shortly after being pulled over last month.

NBC affiliate WFLA-TV said the incident took place November 12 in Oldsmar, located in Pinellas County. O'Connor and her spouse were pulled over by a deputy for driving a golf cart without a license plate when O'Connor said she was the chief and showed the badge.

“I’m hoping you’ll just let us go tonight,” she added.

The deputy said he thought he had recognized her as the chief before she handed him her business card.

“If you ever need anything, call me,” O’Connor said on video. “Seriously.”

Thursday, O'Connor said her handling of the matter “could be viewed as inappropriate.”

“I have expressed great remorse to the Mayor, and I apologize to the residents of Tampa who have a reasonable expectation of better judgment from their chief of police,” O’Connor said in a statement.

Tampa Mayor Jane Castor, who herself is the former Chief of the Tampa Police Department, said O'Connor would go through the due process and face appropriate discipline.

O'Connor has been the chief of the TPD since February 2022.

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