A former Washington, D.C., police commander has threatened to file a whistleblower lawsuit after his decision to provide an escort for Charlie Sheen allegedly resulted in his demotion. According to Reuters, DCPD officer Hilton Burton claims he was transferred after admitting the kind of celebrity escorts he provided for Sheen were standard operating procedure.
Last April, Sheen arrived in D.C. for a “Violent Torpedo of Truth” booking. At the time, Burton was commander of the special operations division, which customarily provides escorts for visiting dignitaries. During the ride they provided for Sheen from Dulles International Airport to Washington’s Constitution Hall, Sheen reportedly posted pictures of the police car’s speedometer reaching 80 MPH and tweeted, “n car with Police escort in front and rear! driving like someone’s about to deliver a baby! Cop car lights #Spinning!”
The incident garnered much publicity because of the tweets and Sheen’s ongoing battle with CBS and Two and a Half Men creator Chuck Lorre. Four months later, Burton was transferred to the DCPD’s medical services branch and demoted two ranks — he claims because Police Chief Cathy Lanier didn’t like the media attention.
Lanier responded in a statement Thursday that, after “a review of command decisions, including several critical incidents,” and based on the recommendation of a supervisor, Burton was transferred. Burton will sue for his former rank to be restored, plus back pay, benefits, and damages.