Rutherford Co. Sheriff's Deputy Charged With Cocaine Trafficking - NewsChannel5.com | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Rutherford Co. Sheriff's Deputy Charged With Cocaine Trafficking

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Luis Reynaldo Parra-Flores Luis Reynaldo Parra-Flores

RUTHERFORD COUNTY, Tenn. – A Rutherford County Sheriff's deputy was arrested after a federal investigation discovered he was trying to help smuggle seven kilograms of cocaine through the Nashville International Airport.

During a press conference at the Rutherford County Sheriff's Office, Sheriff Robert Arnold said Parra-Flores was immediately terminated, and his badge was destroyed. He called Flores a "dirty cop" and said the arrest was a "kick in the face to the department."

During a federal investigation set up by the Drug Enforcement Administration and Metro Nashville drug detectives, Rutherford County patrol officer 35-year-old Flores attempted to accept seven kilograms of cocaine at Nashville International Airport.

"We as a department have a black eye and a busted jaw right now. Mr. Flores definitely ruined lost any respect I think the community had in him," said Arnold.

Even with the details of the investigation under wraps, Sheriff Arnold said the accusations against Flores are not taken lightly by him or the sheriff's office.

"I will be asking; petitioning the post commission from the state of Tennessee to decommission him as an officer so he can never be; even if he was to get through all of this, that he can never be an officer ever again," said Arnold.

"I think I speak for every law enforcement officer in the country, when it comes to the dirty cops, I have not a damn use for them. It just hurts our profession."

Flores joined the department in 2008 and was even honored with the Life Saving Award in 2011.

"He had several awards with us and had done a few good things while he'd been here, but unfortunately this one bad thing will over shadow his entire career," said Arnold.

A career and trust broken like the badges once worn by Flores that Arnold said will forever hang on a wall of shame.

"I didn't want his badge to ever to be worn by anything saying they were protecting the public again or serving the public, so I just wanted it destroyed," said Arnold.

Flores was charged with cocaine trafficking and was being held in U.S. Marshall custody. A hearing will be held in federal court on Thursday.

Flores could face a sentence of 10 years up to life in prison, and a $10 million fine if convicted.

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