Deputy Kirk Smurawa, 40, was released on $5,000 bail from the Orange County Jail Wednesday after he was arrested on charges of armed burglary of a conveyance and petit theft of $100 or more, officials said.
“I don’t have a comment,” Smurawa told WESH Wednesday, refusing to answer questions as he left the jail.
Smurawa was on duty, wearing his uniform and armed with his issued handgun when he was caught on video ransacking a minivan, according to the arrest affidavit.
The sheriff’s office was performing a tactical surveillance operation and was able to capture the entire incident on video, authorities said.
Officials said they saw Smuwara snatch a purse from the minivan and return to his patrol car to search through it before throwing the purse under the driver’s side of the car.
Smuwara was arrested after the incident Tuesday afternoon and admitted to police he took the purse and stole about $55 in cash from two children’s wallets inside, the report said.
Smuwara, who has been with the sheriff’s office since April 2002, was relieved of duty without pay and his law enforcement credentials were revoked pending review, a release said.
It was not immediately known if he had an attorney.