The Hastings Police Department is in the midst of an internal investigation into the conduct of police officer Anthony Miller, who is currently facing a charge of possession of child pornography.
Miller is on paid administrative leave from the department, which is standard procedure when an officer is charged with a crime.
In addition to the child pornography charge, Miller is facing a second charge of sexual exploitation of a child. Both are felonies and carry a combined maximum sentence of 65 years in prison and a $200,000 fine.
If he's found guilty of a felony, he would lose his Peace Officer Standards and Training license and therefore, his job at the department.
Hastings City Attorney Dan Fluegel said the criminal proceedings and the city's investigation are completely separate.
"If the city determines there were violations of city policies, regardless of a criminal conviction, the city can disciple (Miller) for that," he said.
During a search of his New Richmond, Wis., home late last month, Miller admitted to possessing child pornography and to searching for it while on duty as a police officer in Hastings.
Miller will appear before a Wisconsin judge later this month to determine whether the state has enough evidence to proceed further with the case. That hearing will take place at 9 a.m., Tuesday, Jan. 20, at the St. Croix County courthouse.
Miller was in court Tuesday, Jan. 6, for a status hearing where his legal representation was established. He is being represented by St. Paul lawyer Shirlene Perrin.