The former police officer was at one point the highest ranking police officer within the Guam Police Department.
Guam – Just a little over a week after he was demoted from the rank of colonel to the rank of major, Mark Charfauros was fired from the Guam Police Department.
Chief of Police J.I. Cruz made the announcement today, saying it was based on the findings of a second investigation.
“Effective today I have dismissed Maj. Mark C. Charfauros from the Guam Police Department,” announced Cruz.
Charfauros’s termination comes just nine days after he was demoted from the highest ranking officer of colonel to major and nearly two months after body cam footage of him circulated on social media. The footage, which was captured by the body camera worn by Officer John Edwards, shows Charfauros berating and cussing at police officers who were responding to a call of illegal fireworks at an Agat residence.
“Additionally I have issued reprimands to three of the four police officers from the Agat Precinct Command who responded to the incident on December 24, 2016,” Cruz added.
Those police officers are Tracy Volta, Craig Calvo and Angelito Manlulu.
As to Edwards, Cruz said, “he was part of this investigation, however the findings and the merits of the case have brought to light that there was no allegations at this point or there are no findings, no merits for me to take disciplinary action against Officer Edwards.”
Chief Cruz says that because Charfauros and the police officers have due process rights through the Civil Service Commission, he’s unable to release the findings of the investigation.
“There was another part to this investigation. It’s the finding and the merits of that case that warranted me to dismiss him from the department,” he noted.
PNC: “Chief, [Charfauros’] attorney Randy Cunliffe, when we interviewed him, he said that with regards to speaking to the media, that it is his constitutional right to do so. But despite that, that is still grounds for ethical violations in your opinion?”
“Based on the merits and the findings and what has been brought to light in that investigation and based on his response to me—because that’s what the regulation indicates is that I have to give him the opportunity to respond to that before I make my final decision—I would say that in looking at all things and considering all things, yes the merits of the case did warrant that,” Cruz responded.
This is not the first time that Charfauros has been mired in controversy. He has been arrested in the past on misdemeanor charges. We asked Cruz whether Charfauros’ past and the public outcry over his conduct seen on social media was a factor in his decision to terminate Charfauros.
“It did not. I based my decision solely on the findings and the merits of this particular case,” he said.
The chief emphasized that he upholds his department to the highest standards of being the premiere law enforcement entity for the island and as such holds each GPD employee accountable for their actions.
Charfauros declined to comment on the matter and deferred to his attorney for comment however calls and messages to Cunliffe were not returned as of news time.