Officer Caught At Airport Trying To Rob Make-A-Wish Family - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Officer Caught At Airport Trying To Rob Make-A-Wish Family

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    Friday, October 4 2013 3:43 PM EDT2013-10-04 19:43:45 GMT
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Shocking Memphis International Airport security video from Saturday morning shows an off-duty Memphis Police officer's brazen robbery attempt.

Officer Ronald Harris, 34, is accused of taking money from a sick child who was about to leave with his family on a Make-A-Wish trip. He's also accused of assaulting the child's father.

MORE: Memphis Officer Allegedly Steals From Make-A-Wish Family At Airport
MORE: Off-Duty Memphis Police Officer Charged With Airport Assault


Officer Harris was hired by Memphis Police in 2002. His personnel file includes a laundry list of departmental discipline charges. His file with police is 137 pages long. Officer Harris been reprimanded for insubordination, failing to respond to calls, and abusing sick leave.

Airport security cameras showed Officer Harris running through the terminal. The 34-year-old struggled with the child's father before airport police officers got him in handcuffs.

The father was cut on his forehead.

DOWNLOAD: Read Memphis Airport incident report against Ronald Harris

Officer Harris was after a brown paper bag filled with t-shirts and a $1,500 gift card, which was the family's spending money for the trip.

According to a Airport Police report, Officer Harris followed a Make-A-Wish volunteer to Memphis International Airport.

The off-duty officer was in court Monday morning facing charges for robbery, aggravated assault and resisting arrest.

The Make-A-Wish Mid-South Chapter held a news conference to discusses the attack Monday.

"There are people who make bad decisions sometimes and unfortunately we don't, we don't know his story we don't know, we don't know anything about him," said Miranda Harbor of Make-A-Wish Mid-South.

The Airport Police report says Officer Harris' wife told MPD investigators he had been seeing a clinical psychologist. The wife said he is delusional.

MPD investigators told Airport Police Officer Harris was on leave from the department because of an internal investigation. A review of his police personnel file shows a history of departmental investigations. On multiple occasions he failed to answer radio calls, he was investigated for abuse of department sick leave procedures, and in 2013 he was suspended for insubordination.

As well in a separate incident he was given a written reprimand for a traffic accident while on-duty.

Airport Police say Officer Harris escaped from a patrol car.  As they struggled with him, Officer Harris reached for an officer's gun.

Memphis Police Director Toney Armstrong said he is disheartened and saddened by the incident.

The staff at Make-A-Wish Mid-South is focused on the family.

"It is certainly, you know, a shocking and devastating thing that happened but our primary focus is that, that is not the overarching memory for this Wish family, and for their experience we want them to have, you know, the trip of a lifetime and be able to focus on that," Harbor said.

Officer Harris will remain on paid leave as he faces these charges.

The Make-A-Wish Mid-South says the family made it to its destination.

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