The FBI investigated and decided not to bring charges against a former Palm Beach Shores police officer accused of twice raping a blind woman in her home, the department’s police chief said today.
During an arbitration hearing for former officer Charles Hoeffer, Chief Duncan Young said two FBI agents met with him in April, and last week they told him they had found “no evidence of a criminal nature to proceed” with the case.
The State Attorney’s Office also decided not to bring charges in the case, Young said.
Duncan fired Hoeffer in January when his state certification lapsed following nearly two years on paid administrative leave.
The Palm Beach Post reported in February 2015 that 11 different women had made accusations against Hoeffer during his career, including allegations of domestic violence, inappropriate touching, sexual harassment and making sexual comments to women while on duty.
Hoeffer is fighting the unusual firing, saying he wasn’t notified his four-year mandatory certification was going to expire. He needed retraining to maintain it.
Young said that Hoeffer, an officer with various police departments since 1987, should have known.
Young said he intentionally didn’t tell the officer about the upcoming recertification because be wanted Hoeffer gone.
“I don’t believe Mr. Hoeffer is of good moral character,” he told an arbitrator this morning.
Hoeffer has been dogged by misconduct allegations, including a separate rape allegation in 1996 that prosecutors declined to charge. At least 11 women have made accusations against him, including allegations of domestic violence, inappropriate touching, sexual harassment and making sexual comments to women while on duty.
He was fired from Delray Beach Police Department for attacking his ex-wife, Riviera Beach police fired him on the 1996 rape allegation, but he won back his job.
He’s been with Palm Beach Shores police for eight years. In 2014, a blind woman told police that he had twice raped her in her home. The department hasn’t yet completed its internal investigation in that case.
A decision by the arbitrator could be months away.