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Parents upset cop who texted daughter got light punishment

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WOODSTOCK, Ill., Nov. 27 (UPI) -- Parents of a 12-year-old girl who received questionable texts from an Illinois police officer say they are upset by the mild disciplinary action taken.

One of the texts from Woodstock police Sgt. Charles Amati had the message "Send me some sexy pictures," the Chicago Tribune reported Wednesday.

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The girl's mother, who was dating Amati at the time, informed authorities, setting off an investigation that found Amati had illegally used a law enforcement database to research the mother's criminal record.

Amati coordinated his department's use of the database, the Law Enforcement Agencies Data System and monitored its misuse. Officers who misuse the system for personal benefit can be charged with official misconduct, a felony.

Amati, a 24-year-veteran of the force, has not been criminally charged, but he has been suspended without pay for 30 days. He can take the days one at a time anytime he pleases over the next year, police Chief Robert Lowen said.

The girl's parents say they are infuriated by what they consider a light punishment for Amati.

"He's no better than who he's arrested," the father said.

Amati's sentence "disgusts" her, the mother said.

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Lowen defended the officer, saying Amati was a good officer with an otherwise spotless record.

"I thought that the discipline was appropriate in light of all the circumstances," he said.

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