Former Berkeley police officer Robert Howard said 25-year-old Monica Sykes did not deserve her untimely death.

Howard says he knew Monica for a few weeks and spent the night with her before she was reported missing. However, he said he had no involvement in her disappearance.

Howard said he considered Monica to be a good friend. He added he was angry over her death. He says he was hurt, overwhelmed and surprised when he realized people thought he might be involved in Sykes' disappearance.

Howard believes that the distrust that some have for law enforcement led people to jump to conclusions. He encourages people to wait until police can go public with the outcome of investigations before they pass judgment.

Howard began worked with the Berkeley Police Department slast August. The father of five lost his job in March, and said it has been very tough for him financially.

He wants his job back.

Howard believes he lost his job as a result of everything that happened with Monica Sykes, although he was never named as a suspect or person of interest. He feels as though he wrongfully lost his job.

5 On Your Side could not get a comment from the Berkeley Police Department. Last month, Interim Berkeley Police Chief Art Jackson told us that the investigation led city officials to take a closer look at Howard's background check.

Berkeley Mayor Ted Hoskins told us Howard was let go due to an incomplete background check. However, Howard said he filled out his job application as he was told to.

Howard added he did not know the two suspects facing charges in the disappearance of Monica Sykes.