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Deputy suspended for on-duty advances

He was supposed to be keeping an eye on the parking lot.

But a Hillsborough sheriff's deputy apparently was doing a lot more than watching the cars at the American Cowboy restaurant in February and March, according to an internal affairs report.

Deputy Gennaro Scarfogliero received a two-day suspension for harassing a female employee of the restaurant and using Sheriff's Office communication equipment to obtain her address and phone number, according to the report, signed June 28 by Sheriff Cal Henderson.

The deputy had been instructed by his supervisor to check on the restaurant at 3063 W Waters Ave. because of a series of auto thefts in the parking lot during the week of Feb. 20. On March 3, a 25-year-old waitress complained to the Sheriff's Office that Scarfogliero had been frequenting the restaurant in uniform and had been walking behind the register to "hug on" and "try to be real close" with her and other female employees, the report said.

The waitress said Scarfogliero was "very persistent" in his attempts to date her, asking her personal questions and suggesting they meet after work at the local Bennigan's. She complained the deputy called her at home, drove by her house and taunted her with personal information he had obtained. He also requested that she call in sick and appear in a T-back bathing suit on a boat trip he had arranged, the report said.

Scarfogliero's demeanor was described as "intimidating" by the waitress, and other American Cowboy employees. The manager of the club reported that the deputy told her she "was nothing, just a cashier," and intimated he had been a secret service agent, the report said.

The cashier said Scarfogliero threatened to "smack her" and told her "with this badge on, I'll do whatever I want to."

Scarfogliero was also found in violation of departmental regulations concerning profanity.

Scarfogliero's personnel file shows one prior incident, an automobile accident that resulted in counseling from the department.

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