- Associated Press - Monday, June 9, 2014

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) - Memphis police say an off-duty officer has been charged with trying to steal $1,500 from a family about to leave on a trip sponsored by the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

Police say 34-year-old Ronald Harris, who has worked on the Memphis police force for 12 years, was arrested Saturday and charged with robbery, aggravated assault, resisting arrest and evading arrest.

The Commercial Appeal (https://bit.ly/1n1NQQH) cited police and an affidavit in reporting that Harris apparently followed a Make-A-Wish volunteer into the Memphis airport and grabbed a bag that contained a pre-paid Visa worth $1,500 and five St. Jude T-shirts.

Police say the father of the family struggled with Harris and, with help from bystanders, got the bag back. Although he suffered a gash to his head, police say he declined medical treatment so he could go on the trip.

Harris was due in court Monday. It wasn’t immediately clear if he had an attorney.

He was suspended with pay pending the outcome of an administrative investigation.

“It is certainly disheartening and I am deeply saddened that an organization as wonderful as Make-A-Wish was victimized by someone sworn to protect, especially a member of the Memphis Police Department,” MPD Director Toney Armstrong said in a statement.

“Thankfully, no one sustained serious injuries. This officer is now facing serious charges for his criminal behavior. The Airport Police is to be commended for their quick response and professionalism.”


Information from: The Commercial Appeal, https://www.commercialappeal.com

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