An internal board of the Lee County Sheriff's Office upheld the firing of a sergeant Tuesday morning by a vote of 3 to 2.
Sheriff's Office officials fired Sgt. Ross DiPasquale in mid-October, claiming he told his subordinates to do the bare minimum because they did not receive a bonus. Other deputies said DiPasquale was discouraged when he did not receive the bonus, which was not extended to members represented by a union.
The union, which wanted DiPasquale restored to duty, appealed the firing to the Civil Service Commission, which is made up of one civilian member and four Sheriff's Office employees.
Union representatives said they believed the internal investigation about DiPasquale was flawed and contained fabricated statements. Officials with the Sheriff's Office said the union was "painting half the picture," with Sheriff Mike Scott adding that the union has no problem with the commission when the ruling is in its favor.