A Fort Myers police officer was arrested Tuesday on a battery charge following a domestic disturbance.
Zackary Michael Nolen, 23, is on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of criminal and internal investigations, according to Fort Myers Police Department.
Nolen and a woman argued over the course of two days beginning Monday, the arrest affidavit states, with Nolen at times acting aggressively toward her and touching her, leaving marks and redness on her body.
“I think we need to stop looking at domestic violence as an us-and-them issue, and that there’s any profession that could exclude domestic violence,” said Laura Streyffeler, a licensed mental health counselor. “It could be a police officer. It could be a medical doctor. It could be the person next-door.”
When the victim called 911, Nolen fled the home and was later detained at his father’s house. The affidavit states Nolen claimed the woman slapped him in three places, but the deputy did not find any marks indicating Nolen had been touched as he had stated; however, a mark was found on the back of his neck, which Nolen said came from the victim trying to slap him.
Nolen admitted to flipping over the couch while the woman was sitting on it, causing it to land on top of her.
Streyffeler says there’s an added fear factor when calling 911 on those who normally answer the call.
“There’s a whole other layer of fear and discomfort and embarrassment of having to call law enforcement on a law enforcement officer,” Streyfeller said. “That means she must have been really afraid.”
Nolen has since bonded out of Lee County Jail.
A booking mugshot will not be made available because he is a law enforcement officer.