SAPD fires officers accused of having sex while on duty
Both officers plan to seek reinstatement
SAN ANTONIO – The San Antonio Police Department fired two East Side officers last year after an internal affairs investigation determined that they repeatedly disabled the GPS units on their patrol vehicles and engaged in sexual misconduct with one another while on duty, suspension paperwork obtained by the KSAT 12 Defenders reveals.
Officer Eman Fondren, a four-year veteran of the department, and Officer Rebecca Martinez, who had served in the department since 2010, were both handed indefinite suspensions, which is tantamount to being fired, last April.
WARNING: Web extra video may contain language that may be disturbing to some viewers
An attorney representing them said both officers are attempting to get their jobs back through arbitration.
The Police Department released documents related to the firings in late December, more than seven months after they were first requested by The Defenders.
WARNING: GRAPHIC SEXUAL DETAILS BELOW
The records included more than 160 pages of text messages sent between the two officers, who both worked the overnight shift for the east patrol.
The allegations of wrongdoing were first brought to internal affairs by the wife of Fondren in January 2016 after she said she discovered text messages between her then-husband and Martinez automatically backed up to a laptop she claimed to have shared with Fondren.
The woman provided police investigators with a copy of the texts, which often describe sordid sexual activity and included explicit photos shared between the two officers.
Bexar County court records indicate that the couple divorced in October 2016, a year after Fondren's wife discovered his affair with Martinez.
The woman, who declined to be interviewed by The Defenders for this story, was involved in a fight with an off-duty Martinez on Christmas evening 2015, according to SAPD and county court records.
The woman was charged with misdemeanor assault and taken to the Central Magistrate's Office.
According to suspension paperwork for Martinez, the officer showed up at the holding facility six hours later, while on duty, and proceeded to stand outside the woman's cell holding up her phone as if she was taking pictures.
"She was not discreet about it at all," said another woman in the cell, recalling the incident to an internal affairs investigator.
Eight female detainees in all told internal affairs that Martinez repeatedly stood outside the cell holding Fondren's wife.
The assault charge against Fondren's then-wife was later dismissed, according to court records.
Martinez's suspension paperwork also indicates that the officer used her patrol laptop to twice run a background check on Fondren's wife, violating the Police Department's rules, as well as state laws pertaining to computer crimes.
The department's investigation, which focused on the text messages sent between the two officers throughout October 2015, determined that the couple conspired to have sex while on duty, then later carried out their plan on more than one occasion.
During one conversation, Martinez texted Fondren: "You may need to give me that (expletive) at work. I'm craving you."
Fondren later replied via text: "... I'm sure it will still happen."
Fondren later wrote: "It is kinda 'risky' lol just sayin (sic), I'm down for it tho (sic)."
Text records show Fondren instructing Martinez how to use her patrol laptop to "freeze the dot" on her unit's GPS.
According to the Police Department, during one shift on Oct. 17, 2015, both officers turned off their GPS, met in the parking lot of a Home Depot in the 500 block of Fair Avenue, met up a few miles away in a lot in the 800 block of Hot Wells, then returned to the Home Depot parking lot.
Internal affairs investigators used internet air cards in both officers' patrol vehicles to pinpoint their whereabouts while their GPS units were disabled.
Investigators contend that at least one of these encounters involved sexual misconduct.
The attorney representing both officers in arbitration told The Defenders via email that video captured by Home Depot surveillance cameras shows that the officers were not with each other long enough for a sexual act to take place.
The attorney also said neither officer gets out of their patrol vehicles during the footage.
The Police Department did not include the footage in its open records release to The Defenders.
The officers' attorney said he has been allowed to watch the footage, but has yet to be given a copy of it.
When confronted by internal affairs, Martinez described the encounters as "fantasy talk" and "sexting," but denied any sexual misconduct took place.
However, in a text message sent to Fondren a day after the encounters, Martinez wrote: "I can't believe u put yourself out.. Drive (sic) to HD, drove to the parking lot.. Stripped, did me, and got dressed again in 15 min. That blows my mind!".
Fondren replied: "Idk maybe I was worried about gettin (sic) caught."
Both officers later admitted to investigators that they disabled their GPS, but only in an effort to keep Martinez's ex-boyfriend, a fellow SAPD officer assigned to the same substation, from knowing their whereabouts.
Police Department records indicate that on Oct. 19, 2015, Fondren and Martinez again disabled their GPS while on duty, then met at a home off FM 78 belonging to Martinez's friend.
At 5:34 a.m., Martinez was dispatched to a disturbance with a knife call. However, records show she waited almost 20 minutes to respond.
Less than an hour later, at 6:19 a.m., Fondren texted Martinez: "... wished me (sic) would of had that place the first time. Better than doin it in a prkin (sic) lot lol."
Later that night, Martinez texted Fondren that her friend discovered a mess they left behind.
Fondren replied: "Oh damn lol that's funny. I mean besides the (expletive) on her sheets, jeez we're better than that lol."
In a later conversation, Fondren responds to a text from Martinez that she wants to engage in role-playing by writing: "Lol... woo you ARE a freak huh haha. I'm all for it but we gotta do it like on our days off. Not this (sic) quickies on duty ya kno (sic) like on Tuesday."
The owner of the home, when called in to be questioned by an internal affairs investigator, confirmed that the officers were at her home while on duty, but denied having any knowledge of them having sex there.
Her videotaped statement contradicted Martinez, who told investigators she and Fondren did have sex inside the home, but before their shifts started.
Less than a week after the encounter at the home, text messages appear to show an on-duty Fondren at a fatal shooting call, informing an off-duty Martinez that he will be unable to meet at the same residence.
Martinez texted: "I'm waiting for u on the sofa in the living room."
Fondren replied: "Following the victim to Sammc," "I'm stuck at this shootin (sic)," "In (sic) stuck at the scene guy died with gsw (gunshot wound) to the chest."
KSAT archives show that morning a man was shot in the chest in the parking lot of Ed White Middle School, then later taken to a friend's home on Castle Green. The victim later died after being taken to San Antonio Military Medical Center.
According to Police Department records, Fondren's wife discovered the text messages days later, but waited two months to come forward to internal affairs.
"Looking at the totality of the situation, the conduct they were engaged in was not at all ethical, not at all professional," said Sgt. Jesse Salame, an SAPD spokesperson. "Certainly that's something that we're not going to tolerate in this department."
The officers' attorney contends that the text messages used by internal affairs to terminate both officers were obtained illegally.
The attorney told The Defenders that the laptop in question belonged only to Officer Fondren and was not shared property, as Fondren's former wife claimed.
"Our argument, regardless of how it came in, it's enough for us in an administrative proceeding. I feel very strongly that evidence would hold up in an administrative proceeding," Salame said.
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