3 Billings police officers who had sex on city property ID’d, 1 resigns

Posted at 11:59 AM, May 15, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-15 13:59:28-04

UPDATE 3:53 p.m. — The other two police officers who were disciplined for having sex with a civilian employee on city property have been identified. 

Officers Matt Edwards and Clint Anglin were identified in a court filing released Tuesday afternoon. The third officer, Paul Lamantia, publicly identified himself Tuesday morning and announced he had resigned.

The court filing was part of a lawsuit filed jointly by KTVQ and the Billings Gazette, who were seeking to make the names public.

BILLINGS — The Billings police officer investigated for assaulting a Laurel police officer, disciplined for leaving a transient couple in a remote area and sued for injuring a bystander during a 2012 foot chase was identified Tuesday as one of the officers who had sex with a civilian city employee on city property.

Paul Lamantia has resigned from his role as an officer, according to a statement from an attorney representing one of the other officers involved. “We confirm that Paul was the officer who has sex at city hall while off duty,” said attorney Vince Salminen in an email statement.

Lamantia, along with two other officers, were suspended without pay for having sex with the woman on city property.

One of the other officers had sex with the woman on city property and the other had sex with the woman in a police car. Both of those officers had sex with the woman while on duty.

Lamantia declined an interview request from MTN News on Tuesday morning. Police Chief Rich St. John could not immediately be reached for comment. Until Tuesday, the three officers had contested the release of their names to the public.

Yellowstone County District Judge Don Harris ruled Monday that the names of the officer should be released, but gave them 48 hours to appeal to the Montana Supreme Court.

Salminen said in the email that Lamantia has waived his right to an appeal. The Big J Show interviewed Lamantia Tuesday morning about his disclosure and Lamantia shared a prepared statement with the Big J Show.

“There is no excuse for my impulsive, ill-advised actions, and my decision to do so has caused harm to my family, friends, and department,” said Lamantia in the letter.

Lamantia offered an apology and said his “poor” decision was made in 2016, a year filled with “personal adversity.”

Lamantia said he first opted to fight the release of his name in an effort to protect his family, but he has decided against appealing the judge’s Monday ruling.

“I am honored to have served for so many years and thank those that helped me along the way,” said Lamantia in his statement to the Big J Show.

In January 2012, LaMantia was disciplined for picking up an intoxicated Native American man and woman late at night and dropping them off in below freezing weather on the outskirts of town.

The following year, Lamantia was sued by a man he tackled during a foot chase in 2013. The man suffered a torn rotator cuff and learned last week that he can pursue a case against Lamantia for his injury.

Lamantia was investigated by the Billings Police Department in 2015 after he injured his business partner and fellow officer during a dispute. The Laurel officer was hospitalized as a result of the altercation.

According to Salminen, the two other officers are still deciding whether to pursue an appeal and will render a decision by noon Tuesday.