SAN FRANCISCO—On Monday, March 13, the San Francisco Police Department dismissed two recruits because they were caught cheating on tests administered during field training.
When asked about the incident, SFPD Public Information Officer Robert Rueca said, “That’s a personnel matter and we’re not able to comment on it.”
The San Francisco Chronicle first reported the story on Wednesday. In the article, Martin Halloran, the president of San Francisco’s largest police trade union, the San Francisco Police Officers Association confirmed that the recruits had been notified of their dismissal. He disagreed with the charge of cheating, arguing that the recruits used and distributed of a study guide that did not contain specific answers to questions.
According to an undisclosed source within the SFPD, the “department insider” indicated to the SF Chronicle that one of the dismissed recruits indicated that if what they did was cheating, the entire class of 20 recruits would have to be fired.
The probation period involves on-the-job training following the recruits graduation from the police academy, which lasts for a year and is the final hurdle to pass before they can become police officers. Halloran estimated the cost of training an SFPD officer from recruitment to passing probation is around $1 million. One of the dropped recruits was within two days of finishing probation before the allegations surfaced.