Cameras in a police station are nothing new for officers to deal with. But finding one in the internal affairs office interrogation room, where officers often go to rat on each other, may tear the Miami Beach Police Department apart.
Internal affairs officials said the camera, which could record audio and video, was installed for the "safety of the officer."
The police union is calling it foul play.
"It's illegal,'' Union president Gene Gibbons told the Herald. "It's completely unprofessional. It's unethical.''
The Miami-Dade State Attorney's office is investigating "cameragate" to see if anything criminal was behind the video equipment.
The camera has since been removed and a few memos explaining its origin has surfaced. And none of them involve Bob Saget from "America's Funniest Home Videos."
The camera was requested and installed in 2004 by former Police Chief Donald DeLucca. Still, none of the rank and file knew of the covert camera.
Internal affairs claims the camera was not attached to a recording device, which kind of defeats the purpose of having it, but union officials said that idea is kind of far-fetched.
"It is worth noting that although such devices are not uncommon in interview rooms, Chief Noriega's position was that a covert camera did not belong in internal affairs and should be removed,'' Police spokesman Juan Sanchez wrote in an e-mail.