MOULTON ALABAMA – A father and police officer arrested for child abuse.
“It’s real disheartening as a supervisor of the department. Its dishearting for law enforcement in general because we are sworn to uphold the law,” said Moulton Police Chief Lyndon McWhorter.
Moulton Police Officer Mitchell Breland, 27, faces two charges of felony torture or willful abuse of a child following an investigation by the Alabama Bureau of Investigation.
It absolutely just breaks my heart to hear. We have six kids and own a business in town, and I just hate to hear anything like that. Its inexcusable. Absolutely inexcusable. Someone who is out there in the public supposed to be protecting our kids, and then to find out they have been abusing theirs,” said Moulton resident Chris McKay.
Breland has three daughters, all under 10 years old. Recent posts on his Facebook page show he made several trips to the hospital with a least one of his daughters over the past few months. He claimed she suffered injuries at a park. The statements were posted shortly before the investigation began.
The Moulton Police Department was first notified last month that Breland was being investigated by the Department of Human Resources. He was then placed on administrative leave.
“As far as we could tell he was an excellent officer on the job, and again that’s where it kinda gets you blind-sighted because when you get a call about someone that you are not suspecting anything of, and then you have to go and do administrative leave and know that they are under investigation. That’s real heartbreaking to me,” McWorther said.
Breland will face the charges in front of a Lawrence County Judge, but for the Moulton Police Department regardless the outcome…the real damage is already done.
“It’s out there. Whether there is a conviction or not. You have public opinion and it’s a black eye toward law enforcement and our profession,” McWorther said.
At this point, Breland remains on administrative leave with pay pending a follow up investigation. According to The Decatur Daily, Breland resigned from the Decatur police force in 2010 after his estranged wife accused him of assaulting her and threatening her with a gun.