Before former San Diego police officer Anthony Arevalos’ arrest in 2011, his supervisors knew he had made sexually charged comments to a woman with mental disabilities while transporting her to a hospital. They knew he looked at pornography at work on his department-issued computer. And they knew he had been accused of behaving inappropriately toward a 16-year-old girl during a traffic stop.
Supervisors had also cleared Arevalos of sexually assaulting a 28-year-old woman while taking her to jail a year before his arrest. They had sent him back out on the streets to patrol downtown alone. In that case, the sergeant in charge of the criminal investigation was convinced of Arevalos’ guilt, and a district attorney who later reviewed the case found problems with the department’s investigation (though still declined to prosecute him for it).
One of Arevalos’ colleagues described him this way: “Teflon.”
“I felt he believed no matter what he did, that he would not get in trouble,” said Henry Castro, who worked in traffic division with Arevalos and said in court filings he’d used the word.
The depth to which high-ranking police officials knew about Arevalos’ behavior prior to his 2011 arrest for soliciting a sexual bribe from a 32-year-old women in a convenience store bathroom is revealed in a trove of interviews and documents from a civil lawsuit filed by Arevalos’ final victim.
With new accusations surfacing against two more SDPD officers this month, the court documents raise fresh concerns about the department’s ability to stop potential predators before they strike. Lawyers in the case are arguing SDPD has a pattern of covering up serious misconduct and are seeking a court-ordered independent monitor to oversee the department.
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As I recall VOS wrote a story about a straw buy attempt with a gun dealer. The store owner said Arevalos was with a man of middle eastern decent, Arevalos threatened the store owner claiming racism. I will research, I believe that investigation was shut down by SDPD. If not true please correct me.
@Big Dog You have a good memory. Here's the link to the story you are referring to by my old pal Keegan Kyle: http://voiceofsandiego.org/2011/07/24/ex-cop-in-misconduct-case-was-investigated-earlier-in-gun-case/
Is this where we get to tell defenders of the San Diego Police Department (SDPD) that there IS a systemic problem in the SDPD and that leadership changes shouldn't have taken this long? So many people qualify bad behavior by police officer with "99.9% of the police are good men and women," and that's probably true, but at some point systemic cultural problems emerge and this seems to be one of those times. You don't get away with all that Arevalos got away with without people at all levels thinking the behavior is okay. People in the media giving the SDPD a pass are wrong because that 99.9% they talk about is probably more like 80% and that is a problem.
It is said, "Where there is smoke, there is fire." In this case there was not only smoke, but flames, heat, ash and a distinct cracking sound around Officer Arevelos. Apparently SDPD supervisors and officials operate without their senses: sight, touch, hearing, smell. Oh, and the most important of all -- common sense.
They knew this jerk was a sexual predator and they set him loose in Downtown San Diego to prey on drunk young women. Great move.
Yeah, that sex-crimes unit sounds like a really wonderful place. http://www.10news.com/news/investigations/investigation-of-san-diego-police-culture-reveals-sexual-posters-promotions-lawsuits-02102014
He is not the only teflon cop - and it's not only problems with women either. This is also why many good cops retire as soon as they can. It's a look-the-other-way attitude and don't even ask up the chain of command because you'll never get promoted. It's a common culture problem that no Chief has cared to address and has never had to. Now what? Hard to believe that promoting from within it going to be the answer - but bringing in Lansdowne wasn't - that's for sure. Political leaders praising the top cop is routine - they are sheltered from what really goes on.
Well unfortunately it looks like Landsdowne will be Chief Teflon because of his timely "retirement". He will not be held accountable for his in-actions, just like so many of his officers below him.
Sure we can say that many officers are clean but come on, SDPD knows everything that goes on with each other. How other officers could let this continue to happen, by not being a "rat", they have in turn become lower life forms themselves than Arevalos and scum like him.
Oh, and any numb skull who watches any tv knows police must give up all evidence, regardless. So, just who are we employing?
Very embarrassing for America's Finest City.
Ms. Zimmerman stated that 99.9% of SD Cops are good cops. I think her estimate is way off. But even if she is right on the mark, 99.9% of 1,900 cops mean, if my math is close, that there are at least 2 cops that the new chief would claim that are a threat to the citizens of and visitors to San Diego. To find these other "two" rogue officers, maybe the new Chief should look to those who tried to cover up the actions of the cops who had the poor luck of being discovered. The Squirrels don't gather too far from the tree.