Benjamin Gaballa

Photo courtesy of the Tucson Police Department

A Tucson police officer still in the probationary phase of his employment was fired Thursday after investigators verified reports of misconduct.

Investigators determined Benjamin Gaballa had falsified an official police report, engaged in misrepresentation of facts to his supervisor and mishandled evidence, Sgt. Maria Hawke, spokeswoman for the Tucson Police Department, said in a news release.

Gaballa was hired by TPD in September 2012. After completing academy and field training, Gaballa was assigned as a patrol officer.

“Personnel at the Pima County jail advised Tucson Police Department personnel that a female prisoner, who had recently been booked into the jail, had made allegations against Mr. Gaballa that indicated he had engaged in inappropriate conduct,” Hawke said.

Because the allegations “were potentially criminal in nature, personnel from the office of internal affairs initiated both a criminal and administrative investigation into Mr. Gaballa’s conduct,” she said. During the investigation, Gaballa was removed from duty and placed on imposed leave.

The criminal investigation into his actions is ongoing.

Kimberly Matas