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10 Calif. officers charged in civil rights, corruption probe

These charges encompass offenses such as wire fraud and the deprivation of rights under the pretense of authority


AP Photo/Godofredo A. Vásquez

By Sarah Roebuck

ANTIOCH, Calif. — Nine current or former Antioch and Pittsburg police officers and one community service officer were charged in a federal corruption investigation, revealing instances where these individuals allegedly engaged in civil rights violations and fraudulent activities, KGO reports.

These actions appeared to be aimed at securing a pay raise and involved fabricating information in official reports to conceal incidents of excessive use of force, according to U.S. officials.

Ismail J. Ramsey, the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of California, has lodged four separate indictments detailing various charges. These charges encompass offenses such as wire fraud, the deprivation of rights under the pretense of authority, conspiring against individuals’ rights and involvement in a conspiracy to distribute anabolic steroids. Among those implicated in these charges are nine police officers and one community service officer. While all 10 individuals are named in the charges, only two of them are facing allegations in multiple indictments.

[RELATED: Investigation of racist texts inside a Calif. PD leads to a federal lawsuit]

According to officials, just three of the officers are currently employed and they were not on active duty at the time.

On Thursday, arrest warrants were executed in California, Texas and Hawaii, as stated by Robert Tripp, the special agent in charge of the FBI’s San Francisco Field Office. Officials have noted that one individual remains to be apprehended.

Since the beginning of 2022, both the FBI and the Contra Costa County District Attorney’s Office have conducted investigations into the departments. Additionally, earlier this year, the state attorney general’s office initiated its own inquiry.

Indictment 1: College Degree Benefits Fraud

Six officers “claimed they earned college credits toward degrees. Instead, they hired people to take classes and exams for them,” Ramsey said. Ramsey stated that the officers conspired in a scheme to defraud their respective police departments, evading the need to attend classes or fulfill their obligations, KRON reports.