A Lethbridge police officer is facing charges of fraud and public mischief in connection with a false report he made to an insurance company about a theft that never happened.

Trever James Sparrow, 37, allegedly reported that his truck had been broken into in February 2011 and several items were taken while he was out of the province.

He made a claim with his insurance company and the company then paid him out a loss.

There are also suspicions that Sparrow took steps to intentionally mislead investigators in the case to divert suspicion away from him.

He is charged with one count of fraud under $5,000 and two counts of public mischief.

Sparrow, an eight year veteran with the force, has since been relieved from duty with pay pending the outcome of a court and internal disciplinary hearing, the Lethbridge Police said in a release.

He is scheduled to appear in court Feb. 20.