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RALEIGH -- A veteran police sergeant who had served as president of the local police union was fired this week, Raleigh police officials said Thursday afternoon.

Sgt. Rick Armstrong, who worked in the department's field operations division, said he was notified Wednesday of his termination. President of the Raleigh Police Protective Association for 10 years, Armstrong said he resigned from that post nearly two weeks ago.

Armstrong was one of four officers under an internal affairs investigation following allegations that some officers had sex with a woman described as a prostitute in the Bragg Street area of Southeast Raleigh. Police spokesman Jim Sughrue confirmed that Armstrong had been fired.

Although Armstrong has been on administrative leave with pay for the past five months because of the inquiry, he said his firing was not related to the sexual misconduct investigation.

"My termination has nothing to do with prostitution," Armstrong said Thursday evening. "But because of the appeals process, I am not at liberty to discuss what happened in detail."

He said two of the officers named in the allegations have resigned, and another officer, M.C. Rominski, was fired June 15. The reason for his termination has not been made public, pending an appeal.

Armstrong said that during his 14-year career, he had an impeccable record.

Armstrong, who has five days to appeal his dismissal, plans to submit the necessary paperwork Monday. Afterward, he will have an opportunity to speak with Police Chief Harry Patrick Dolan. As a final recourse, he can take the issue up with thecity's civil service commission.

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