Marana, AZ – One Marana Police Department officer was fired and three other officers resigned after an internal investigation uncovered allegations of computer tampering and on-duty sexual relationships, police documents said.
Details of the investigation were released on Friday, KPNX reported.
Officers Kyla Sylvia, Daniel Nicholas, and Keith Storms resigned their positions with the department, while Officer Dionysius Cazeres, 31, was fired and charged with two felony counts of computer tampering.
According to KPNX, a Notice of Disciplinary Action indicated that Officer Cazares ran two vehicle registration checks for after she concluded her Sep. 17 patrol shift.
She allegedly did so for her own personal agenda.
According to investigators, Officer Cazares admitted she had been “involved in a personal relationship with Officer Nicholas, and suspected he may also be involved in a personal relationship with Officer Sylvia,” KPNX reported.
Officer Cazares told investigators her relationship with Officer Nicholas took place from July until August.
Officer Cazares noticed that while she and Officer Nicholas were working on the night of Sep. 17, Officer Nicholas spent a significant period of time in a residential neighborhood outside of his assigned district.
Officer Cazares said she went to the neighborhood after her shift ended, and obtained vehicle registration information from two vehicles in order to uncover who Officer Nicholas had met with.
“She knew his vehicle had been in this particular neighborhood,” Manara Police Chief Terry Rozema told KNXV. “She went to that neighborhood later, ran a couple of plates to try and figure out maybe who he was seeing and was able to determine that he was, in fact, visiting another officer on the department.
Officer Sylvia was not on duty when Officer Nicholas came to her residence.
According to the Oct. 10 indictment against Officer Cazares, “On or about the 17th Day of September, 2017, Dionysius Cazares exceeding authorization of use or without authorization, committed computer tampering by knowingly obtaining information required by law to be kept confidential or records that are not public record, by accessing a computer, computer system or network, belonging to ACJIS,” KTVK reported.
The Arizona Criminal Justice Information System (ACJIS) is “a statewide network housing various databases on persons and property in this state. The ACJIS network is maintained by the Department and is available to authorized local, state, and federal criminal justice agencies,” according to Arizona legal code.
Officer Cazares was terminated from the Marana Police Department on Oct. 27, KTVK reported.
During the investigation, Officer Cazares also admitted that Officer Nicholas spent an “extended period of time” at her home while Officer Nicholas was on duty, and that he returned to her residence in between calls over a period of three to five hours, KPNX reported.
The investigation related to Officers Sylvia and Storms began on Oct. 10, after an anonymous citizen reported witnessing two on-duty officers “involved in a ‘romantic moment’” near a lake on July 28.
Authorities later determined that the pair spent over three hours at the rural location while they were supposed to be working. Officer Storms told investigators that they left the lake after another officer told them to get back to patrol, KPNX reported.
According to KTVK, authorities said Officer Sylvia admitted to having sexual relationships with Officers Nicholas and Storms.
In a Nov. 7 Notice of Intended Disciplinary Action, the Marana Police Department informed Storms they planned to fire him after their investigation was completed, KPNX reported.
“The public has to know that they can trust that we’re not going to just drive around using police resources for our own benefit,” Chief Rozema told KPNX. “While we’re here at work, we’re expected to work and to do our job to keep this community safe. The conduct of a few does not tarnish the efforts, and the work, and the professionalism of the many.”
Officer Nicholas resigned on Oct. 19, Officer Kyla Sylvia resigned on Oct. 20 and Officer Keith Storms resigned Nov. 9, KNXV reported.
The reality is, good people make bad decisions. These were real poor errors in judgement, and unfortunately, we lost some really good officers as a result of this,” Chief Rozema told KNXV.
Cazares pled not guilty to two felony counts of computer tampering.
Her next court hearing is scheduled for Dec. 13.