A Southern California police officer has been charged with impersonating a fellow officer on an online dating site, prosecutors said Monday.
Huntington Beach officer Steven Tennant is accused of posting the other man's photo and personal cellphone number after he began dating Tennant’s ex-girlfriend, the Orange County District Attorney’s Office said.
It wasn’t immediately known if Tennant, 32, has an attorney. He faces two misdemeanor counts of internet impersonation for the purpose of harming, intimidating, threatening and defrauding, prosecutors said.
The other officer was made aware of the postings when he started receiving texts from unknown numbers referencing the dating site that featured his photo.
“Impersonating another individual on the internet is not a joke,” District Attorney Todd Spitzer said in a statement. “It is a crime that could result in serious harm. This is not ‘boys will be boys’ or ‘cops will be cops’ behavior. It is curious and beyond disturbing that a sworn police officer would engage in such reckless behavior to endanger the safety of a fellow officer.”
The Huntington Beach Police Department initiated an investigation after the officer reported the harassment to a supervisor, officials said.
Tennant, of Yorba Linda, is scheduled to be arraigned on May 5. If convicted of all charges, he faces a maximum sentence of two years in jail.