Deputy reprimanded for using county equipment to dig up info on private citizen

Deputy accused of posting man's personal info
Posted at 9:41 PM, Sep 15, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-15 22:14:49-04

CHARLOTTE COUNTY - A Southwest Florida sheriff's deputy getting reprimanded for using a database to dig up personal information on a private citizen who wasn't even committing a crime.

When Andrew Sheets launched a website focused on exposing cops' questionable behavior, he never thought he'd become the target of that bad behavior himself.

Sheets says, "We are looking at malicious intent on this and/or conspiracy to commit."

Sheets doesn't want his face shown on television for fear of retaliation.

He says his website, Charlotte County Cop Watch, features media reports about officers accused of violating policies.

Sheets tells us, "The goal with that is to show people that corruption is happening everywhere and just like they hold you accountable, you have the right to hold them accountable also."

Sheets says his site also gets about two and a half million views per month.

He says that rubs some officers the wrong way.

Sheets says, "They hate my guts because this blew up so big."

Sheets says Charlotte County deputy Robert Tuck crossed the line by improperly accessing a department database meant to solve crimes.

Instead, the officer dug up all of Sheets' personal information.

A few weeks later, that info was posted in a popular law enforcement chat room called ‘’, where it remains today.

Sheets says that info contained, "My name my phone number, my address, everything. Couldn't believe it."

A local attorney familiar with the case says deputy Tuck clearly violated department policy.

Attorney Andrew Banyia says, "When this officer used this system it was to satisfy a personal grudge and that's exactly why we have the rules we do regarding the use of these extremely powerful systems."

There's no evidence deputy Tuck posted Sheets' information in the chat room but records show the Charlotte County Sheriff's Office investigated and found he did use the department's database to access Sheets' info without permission.

As a result, the deputy was issued a letter of reprimand, essentially warning him not to do this again.

Sheets say that's nothing more than a slap on the wrist.

Sheets says, "A letter of reprimand is a joke, a lot more can happen; he can be fined he can be suspended."
We contacted the Charlotte County Sheriff's Office but haven't heard back yet.

When we do we'll let you know.