FDLE clears Winter Park police chief after officer says chief, his wife tried to influence investigation

FDLE clears Winter Park police chief after officer says chief, his wife tried to influence investigation
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating Winter Park Police Chief Michael Deal. (WFTV.com News Staff)

WINTER PARK, Fla. — The Florida Department of Law Enforcement has cleared the Winter Park police chief of any wrongdoing after an officer said the chief and his wife attempted to influence and belittle him.

Winter Park City Manager Randy Knight asked FDLE to look into an incident involving Chief Michael Deal, his wife, Summer Deal, and an Altamonte police officer.

Body camera video footage showed Summer Deal hand her phone to the police officer after a fender bender. She said her husband was on the line.

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“His name is actually Chief Michael, just letting you know,” she is heard saying on body camera video. “D/C of Altamonte. Chief of Winter Park.”

The officer said he felt intimidated by the chief, who criticized his handling of the incident.

After the incident, Chief Deal, who once served as deputy chief for Altamonte police, asked his former department to open an internal investigation into how the crash was handled.

That investigation cleared the Altamonte Springs officer of doing anything wrong.

FDLE said its investigation into Deal showed that the chief did not violate any state laws during the incident.

Knight said the city of Winter Park has not been determined the next steps that will be taken by city management.