Harnett Detention Officer Arrested Following Internal Investigation

A two month internal investigation by the Harnett County Sheriff’s Office has led to the arrest of a recently-hired detention officer.

Investigators said Harnett County detention officer Michael Tandy had been selling contraband to inmates.  Tandy allegedly sold tobacco products to inmates between May and July 2019.  Harnett County Sheriff Wayne Coats fired Tandy on July 29th.

On August 13th, Tandy was arrested by Harnett County deputies and charged with 8 counts of selling or giving tobacco products to an inmate and one count of failing to discharge duties. Tandy was released on a $25,000 secured bond. His first court date is scheduled for August 29th.

“I understand that all of the employees of the Harnett County Sheriff’s Office are human and make mistakes as such, but the citizens of Harnett County hold all of us to a higher standard and we must be held to that high standard,” Sheriff Coats said in a press release. “I require all employees to demonstrate professional and ethical conduct both on and off duty and will fully investigate any report of misconduct by my staff as it is our goal to provide safety to our detention staff and detainees housed at the facility.  This incident was not simply a mistake or bad decision on Mr. Tandy’s part, it was a terrible decision to commit an illegal act that reflects negatively on the reputation of every honest, professional, upstanding, employee of the Harnett County Detention Center. I am extremely disappointed in his actions.”

Tandy had been a detention officer since April 22, 2019.