ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. - A St. Johns County Sheriff's Office (SJSO) sergeant received a two-level demotion for trying to conceal an ongoing friendship with a convicted felon and prostitute.

SJSO Internal Affairs began investigating Sgt. Jared Monie on July 3 after a woman alleged she was having an inappropriate relationship with him.

Jamie Taylor, 37, made these statements in late June while she was being questioned about a separate narcotics investigation, according to the report.

Taylor claimed she received text messages and visits from Monie while he was on duty up until July 28, 2016 when she was arrested on drug violations. During the arrest, police seized Taylor's phone and Monie admitted he deleted the messages between the two because "he was concerned for personal reasons someone might discover the conversations."

Department policy prohibits officers from associating or participating with people engaged in unlawful activity while on or off duty. Maintaining a relationship with a person with a criminal reputation is also prohibited.

"We have to keep a very separate relationship with those who may be involved in criminal activity," said SJSO Commander Chuck Mulligan. "We can't become part of their lives or part of walking them through a better pathway especially because begins to muddy the waters, and compromise the integrity of an investigation."

Monie told investigators he was initially trying to help Taylor get over her narcotics dependency and leave an abusive boyfriend, however he admitted in the internal report the relationship had become inappropriate.

Taylor has been arrested several times by SJSO for drug possession, probation violation, and robbery according to court records. The internal investigative report determined Monie knew "Taylor was a convicted felon, prostitute, and known narcotics addict and dealer."

Mulligan said no inappropriate physical contact happened between the two but even a perception of a personal relationship is violation of SJSO's strict policy because of Taylor's criminal history.

According to the report, Taylor told investigators she felt intimidated by the officer, but when she tried to get him to divulge law enforcement information to her, he would not.

Monie was demoted from sergeant to patrol deputy for three policy violations.

First Coast News reached out to Taylor for a comment, but did not receive a response.