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San Diego Police Officer Arrested On Domestic Violence Charge

A San Diego police officer was arrested Tuesday in La Mesa in a domestic violence case and was suspended without pay, police officials said Wednesday.

Gilbert Lorenzo, a seven-year veteran of the department and a La Mesa resident, was arrested Tuesday and booked into a county jail on suspicion of domestic battery against his wife, said La Mesa police Lt. Matt Nicholass.

San Diego Police Chief Shelley Zimmerman said the department wouldn't tolerate the behavior and chose to immediately revoke Lorenzo's police powers.

"Our department fully cooperated with this investigation with La Mesa (police) and coordinated the arrest of our officer," Zimmerman told reporters at a news conference Wednesday. "I immediately revoked his police powers and suspended him from our department."

Nicholass said his department was alerted to Lorenzo's alleged violence by a San Diego police representative around 1:45 p.m. Tuesday.

"La Mesa detectives immediately began investigating the case and coordinated with San Diego Police Department and ultimately determined that he was, in fact, a suspect, and he was arrested," Nicholass said.

The 31-year-old officer's spouse did not require hospital treatment, the lieutenant said. He declined to disclose other details about the alleged abuse, including where it purportedly occurred.

Lorenzo, who is assigned to the department's Northern Division, posted $50,000 bail after his arrest and was released.

His arrest is the latest in a string of cases involving allegations of misconduct by San Diego police officers. Among the other cases are allegations of sexual abuse of female detainees and drunken driving.

The misconduct cases led to former San Diego Police Chief Bill Lansdowne announcing his retirement in February. Mayor Kevin Faulconer immediately named Shelley Zimmerman, one of Lansdowne's top assistants, to replace him.

The day Zimmerman was named police chief, she vowed that misconduct by officers would not be tolerated.

"As a proud member of our division, I can say all our officers will serve with professionalism and integrity," she said at the time.

She continued to promote that theme as she talked to the public and reporters in the days and weeks after her appointment.

Zimmerman also has followed through on Lansdowne's promise to have an outside agency review the department's practices and procedures to get at what might be contributing to the rash of misconduct cases. The U.S. Department of Justice is conducting the audit.

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