Middletown detective dies unexpectedly after pleading guilty to slapping child while off duty
City of Middletown Detective Fredrick Slanovec passed away unexpectedly at his home on Monday, according to a statement issued by the department.
The 41-year-old served the department for 17 years and had an exemplary career until his conduct was called into question last May, when he slapped a 14-year-old boy in the face and shoved him into a brick wall in front of frightened guests at a communion party at the Olde Erie Restaurant in Middletown.
Slanovec was off duty at the time of the incident and put on paid administrative leave during a workplace and criminal investigation. He was charged and pleaded guilty July 13 to disorderly conduct. The Orange County District Attorney’s Office said Slanovec was intoxicated during the unprovoked altercation and required him to undergo alcohol abuse treatment and monitoring for one year as part of the terms of his plea.
The City of Middletown Police Department released a statement Wednesday saying, “Slanovec made many valuable contributions to our agency during his career, and the department expresses our sincere condolences to his family and friends.”
They did not say how Slanovec died but an Orange County official tells News 12 that Slanovec suffered a self-inflicted injury.
At the time of his plea, Slanovec was facing administrative charges concerning his continued employment as a police detective and the district attorney’s office said they would no longer call on him to testify on cases.
District Attorney Dave Hoovler issued a statement at the time of Slanovec’s guilty-plea, “I sincerely hope that this defendant, and all who suffer from alcohol or other substance abuse issues, seek the help that they need to overcome their issues before they seriously harm others and themselves.”
Slanovec was a Minisink Valley High School graduate and athlete who was inducted into the Minisink Valley Hall of Fame for his football accomplishments.
He began his career in law enforcement as an Orange County Correction Officer and briefly worked as a police officer for the Mount Hope Police Department before working for the City of Middletown Police Department.
He leaves behind his wife, Jacqueline, and their son, Ryan.
Funeral arrangements are being handled by Applebee-McPhillips Funeral Home in Middletown. Visitation is scheduled for Sept. 11 from 3 to 7 p.m. Funeral services will be held Sept.12 at 11 a.m. at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in Middletown.