Tavares officer who left scene after crash reaches deal with state

TAVARES, Fla. — A Tavares police officer who drove through landscaping, hit curbs, knocked over a water pump and then fled the scene is now off the force.

Steven Moulton reached an agreement with the state under conditions that cost him his job.

The case against Moulton is still under investigation, but he turned in his badge five days ago and will never work in law enforcement again.

Moulton resigned from the department and agreed to a pretrial contract that guarantees he'll never work as an officer again.

"He's been an officer here for 14 years and has no write-ups, so this is his first time ever getting in trouble,” said Cpl. Sarah Coursey.

The investigation began in November when Tavares police and the state were investigating Moulton for leaving the scene of this accident.

According to state records, he was uncooperative, saying he did not want to meet and would not answer the door if anyone came over.

He later changed his story to say he was not driving, according to records.

"He did leave. He was issued a citation. We issue those citations all the time,” said Coursey. “I have people leave a scene and didn't realize they hit something. We don't always issue a misdemeanor citation. We'll issue a careless driving or what have you."

The state attorney's office offered Moulton a deal: quit the force, give up law enforcement permanently and go on probation in exchange for no prosecution.

"We all make mistakes. We're people too. So, he made a mistake and it ended up costing him his job,” Moulton said.

The department said it will be up to the pension board to decide if Moulton will get to keep his pension.