Investigation into man in deputy uniform and incident caught on tape

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CLEVELAND– The FOX 8 I-Team has obtained video that has sparked an internal investigation by the Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Department.

Cell phone video shows a man dressed as a deputy showing up on Cleveland’s west side at the scene of an ongoing property dispute between neighbors.

Why would a deputy be involved in that?

The man in the uniform can be heard on the video saying, “Well he told me, you said that you’re gonna take the fence down. He was notified that you’re taking the fence down.” A resident with the camera can be heard saying, “But I want to understand the police involvement.” Meantime, the man in the uniform then walked away.

Gavin Kamaske shot the video, and he told the I-Team, “The more he spoke, the more I could tell he was full of it. Something just was not right.”

Now the Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Department is doing an internal investigation. The sheriff’s department says the man in uniform was Harry Gant, retired Cleveland police officer and now a special deputy with the sheriff’s department. Basically, a special deputy is an unpaid deputy given law enforcement power for special assignments.

The I-Team wondered, did anyone at sheriff’s department headquarters send that special deputy there for that dispute? The folks complaining wondered too. They got a letter from the county. No body camera video. No incident report. No record of that special deputy getting dispatched.

The I-Team reached Gant by phone. He said he was “not authorized” to speak and hung up.

Those residents say Gant even came back weeks after that incident as other men ripped out a fence. So Gavin Kamaske and Molly Manley have gotten a protection order against Gant as the investigation plays out.

It’s not clear how long the internal investigation may take. Kamaske said, “I certainly hope he’s stripped of any accreditation or power that he has.”

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