Frederick County Sheriff's Deputy Charged in Burglary Investigation

- MARTINSBURG, W.Va--Another sheriff deputy from Frederick County Maryland has been charged with a crime. Earlier this week, one was charged with assault. On Friday, officials say another deputy is facing burglary charges.

It was at the Ruby's Restaurant/gaming parlor in Martinsburg, where police say Frederick County Sheriff Deputy Todd Joia came and stole money boxes from two gaming lottery machines earlier this month.

Burglaries tend to happen this time of year, but Sheriff Kenny Lemaster says, you don't expect a police officer to be involved in this type of behavior.

"You put more exposure because you are a police officer," says Sheriff Kenny Lemaster of Berkeley County Sheriff's Office. "It's does not condone what he did. When you commit a crime number one you should not be doing that, and you are putting yourself out there when you are putting if when you commit a crime."

Police say Joia is a regular at Ruby's. They were called there on December 10th for a report of a burglary. When they checked the surveillance footage, it showed Joia was there. After more investigation, police had enough evidence for an arrest warrant.
They say shortly after it was issued, Joia turned himself in and was charged with a felony count of breaking and entering.

He's the second deputy from the Frederick County, Maryland sheriff's department to be charged with a crime this week. Earlier, Deputy Kevin White was charged with assault, after investigators say he punched someone outside of a Hagerstown bar.

On Friday, Sheriff Jenkins released a statement expressing his disappointment in the actions of his deputies saying:

“I’m absolutely floored by the alleged criminal actions of Joia.  I can offer no explanation as to the reasons for what he did.  I’m extremely angry that for the second time in the past week this agency’s reputation has been tarnished by the actions of off-duty deputies."

It's a sentiment the sheriff on the other side of this investigation understands, a case that he says is difficult to comprehend.

"Police officers are human beings, they do make mistakes," says Lemaster. "They do break the law, but the big this is, the agency deal with it, this person was charged and arrested and it's going to the system."   

Frederick County Sheriff's Office says Joia has been suspended without pay. They are conducting an internal investigation.

Don't Miss

Video Center