Lexington officer resigns months after incident with teen referee

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Months after the initial incident ,a Lexington police officer who pleaded guilty to harassing a teenage referee has resigned from the department.

Officer Keith Spears sent a letter of resignation Thursday morning to the Lexington Mayor and Chief of Police.

Investigators say Spears grabbed a referee's arm during an argument at a soccer game in Scott County.

Officer Spears states, in a letter, his resignation will be effective June 30th.

He was set to have a disciplinary hearing with city leaders regarding an October 2013 incident, where investigators say Officer Spears confronted a 13-year-old referee after a soccer game in Scott County.

Spears pleaded guilty to one count of harassment with no contact.

In his letter of resignation, Spears writes, "if I continue through the hearing process and am able to prevail, due to my disability, I would not be physically able to return to active police duty. Therefore, I have no real alternative, but to resign."

Spears goes on to say he is in no way relinquishing his rights to proceed through the disability retirement procedure. He says he filed the paperwork, "long before any personnel policy violations became an issue."

That is where the city steps in. They say "in fact, his conduct was at issue months before his disability pension application was filed."

The city claims he filed for disability pension March 7, 2014. A criminal complaint resulting from his conduct off the soccer field was filed late October of 2013.

The disciplinary hearing set for Officer Spears will no longer occur, due to Thursday's resignation.

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