CPD officer fired after planting Apple AirTag in woman’s car, stalking her

The victim is a Hamilton County Sheriff’s deputy, according to the CPD case file.
Apple Airtag
Apple Airtag(KBJR/CBS 3)
Published: Jan. 31, 2023 at 5:06 PM EST
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CINCINNATI (WXIX) - A Cincinnati police officer has been fired after planting an Apple AirTag on a woman to track her movements, following her to a friend’s home and damaging her friend’s property.

Cincinnati City Manager Sheryl Long on Tuesday approved of a recommendation made by Police Chief Teresa Theetge to terminate Darryl Tyus, a CPD officer since 2007.

Tyus, 46, was placed on desk duty when criminal charges were filed against him last year. His termination is effective immediately.

The victim is a Hamilton County Sheriff’s deputy, according to the CPD case file. Tyus had been in a relationship with her from 2008-2022. It’s unclear when the relationship ended, whether before or as a consequence of the stalking behavior.

“What Darryl Tyus did by knowingly stalking a women, causing her to feel threatened and fear for her life, is the exact behavior our officers are sworn to prevent,” Theetge said Tuesday. “For the Cincinnati Police Department, the community’s trust is the foundation of what gives us the authority to perform our daily duties. Tyus not only broke that trust, but he broke the law that he took an honorable oath to enforce.”

The woman said in an interview with investigators that Tyus planted an Apple AirTag on her car in April 2022 and used it to monitor her whereabouts without her knowledge for weeks.

She said she became aware of it when she noticed an “unfamiliar beeping sound” when she used her car. She then searched her car and found the AirTag “affixed to the floor in the front passenger footwell under the carpet.” The woman entered the serial number into Apple’s database and, as she told investigators, discovered it was registered to Tyus’ phone number.

At one point, Tyus allegedly followed the woman into the home of a friend and damaged that person’s car and motorcycle. He also allegedly made three spare keys to the woman’s home without her knowledge.

The woman said Tyus agreed to pay her friend for the property damage but that he ignored her request that he not involve her in the funds transfer. Instead, Tyus brough the money order to her home.

She produced a text messages from Tyus saying, “Please speak lightly with your words[...] as if I can’t [****] your life up either” and “If you wish to pass out threats that’s cool[...] you’re truly unsure what I’m capable of if you wish to place our place of employment on the line.”

The woman took that to mean Tyus would damage her professionally if she complained to CPD about his action.

She told investigators Tyus had “shown behavior of trying to cover up his crimes or identity by changing his number and using a Google number through his texts. I have no idea what he is capable of and I do fear retaliation and for my life.”

The woman sought an emergency temporary protection order as her concerns for her safety and the safety of her two children increased. The emergency petition was denied, and a full hearing was scheduled.

CPD became aware of the matter after the woman reported her safety concerns to the HCSO Internal Investigations Division, which passed the information to CDP.

CPD’s Internal Investigative Sections began its investigation May 26.

The City of Cincinnati Prosecutor’s Office recommended a charge of menacing by stalking against Tyus. He was arrested on June 17, 2022 and arraigned in Hamilton County Municipal Court on the charge on June 27.

The prosecutor’s office produced the AirTag as well as Ring video footage to substantiate the claims in a response to a discovery request on Oct. 5. Tyus pleaded guilty one day later.

Hamilton County Municipal Court Judge Tyrone Yates sentenced Tyus in October 2022 of 90 days suspended jail time, five years probation, mandated counseling, court fees and an order to stay away from the woman.

Yates opted not to enforce a sentencing provision that prohibits stalking convicts from possessing or using a gun. Yates instead authored a new order to the effect that Tyus cannot possess or use a gun he owns but can still posses or use an official weapon.

The IIS report recommended Tyus’ termination on two grounds: CPD rules require officers to obey traffic laws and criminal laws; and Tyus’ conviction automatically denied him access to certain key law enforcement databases and web portals.

Tyus majored in computer networking at Cincinnati State Technical and Community College.

His personnel file shows no significant history of misconduct. A 2017 performance report described him as a “consistently selfless” leader who presents a “clean, professional image, conducting himself in a professional manner.” A performance report the following year offered he’s “a highly motivated officer who attempts to go above and beyond expectations.”


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