CAP-CARAL

A Cape Coral police officer has been fired and another has been fired due to numerous policy violations related to the death of a Cape Coral man.

Police Officer Anthony Sizemore said Officer Davis Rios had been fired and that he had accepted a letter of dismissal from Officer Joshua Morgan instead of dismissal.

On Sunday, March 13, two officers found 22-year-old Jeremiah Don Balam Jr. intoxicated and fainted on the roadway near Club Square after leaving the Backstreets Bar around 3:30 that Sunday morning.

An officer’s camera applied to Balam’s body showed a high level of disability. Sizemore said the investigation into the incident revealed that law enforcement officers did not call for medical help, did not check the address to drive him home, did not try to find a family and did not make sure he had a phone number to call for help.

Jeremiah Don Balam Jr., 22 years old.

When officers told Balam that further engagement would lead to the passage of the Marchman Act, meaning he would be temporarily taken into custody for emergency assistance, he declined and said he would go home.

He went in the opposite direction from his house, and this was the last time he was seen alive.

Later that morning, the family reported Balam’s disappearance.

The body of a 22-year-old boy was found in a nearby canal on March 15, where police said he died of drowning, falling intoxicated.

Sizemore asked to review the cameras applied to the body and asked the Bureau of Professional Standards to begin an investigation into the internal affairs.

The investigation revealed numerous “outrageous violations of policy,” the head added, in particular, failure to perform official duties.

“I really expect my officers to do what is legal, moral and fair,” Sizemore said. “These actions of the officers, or in this case inaction, are not in line with our vision, mission or values.”

Jeremiah Balam Jr. is known to his loved ones as JJ. They believe he would be alive today if two Cape Coral police officers did their job.

“JJ could have been saved. He could be here today. It could have ended quite differently. And I just … In fact, there is nothing more to say except that it was an absolute failure, “said JJ’s stepmother Brittany Moore.

“It’s annoying. This is staggering, because when you look at the police, the first thought is, “Okay, everything’s fine.” You know, well, the cops are here. We are safe. but in this situation they did nothing, ”Moore said.

Looking at the cameras on his body, the police chief called what he saw “outrageous” and immediately called an internal investigation.

“Our employees did not call for medical help. They never checked our address system in the file to drive it home. They did not try to contact him at his place of residence and did not find a family member, ”Sizemor said.

“I’m just very disgusted with how it all happened. “I really am,” said Moore.

JJ’s family is heartbroken, believing that this tragedy could have been completely prevented.

“I hold these two officers responsible for his death. Because it could have been 100% prevented, and they failed, ”Moore said.

The police chief said none of the officers had any problems with the documents prior to the investigation.

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