San Diego Sheriff Releases Reports About Deputies Accused Of Sexual Assault
The San Diego County Sheriff's Department is now publishing records about some of its deputies accused of sexual assault after a new state law went into effect at the beginning of this year.
KPBS requested records of all local law enforcement agencies about officers who committed sexual assault, lied when reporting a crime or in an investigation, or used force that caused a person serious harm or death. The Sheriff's Department initially said it would cost more than $350,000 to publish the records, but then Sheriff Bill Gore changed his mind and said the department would provide the records for free.
So the department is now beginning to release its records by publishing them online.
The first two reports published deal with deputies accused of groping women. Neither deputy still works for the department.
Timothy Wilson Jr.
In one case, Deputy Timothy Wilson Jr. groped a teenage girl while standing behind her at a Vista Panda Express restaurant. He resigned from the department and then pleaded guilty to the crime and was sentenced to a year in prison.
The Sheriff's Department's internal investigation into Wilson also says that he used the department's computer system numerous times to view the criminal case in which he was the suspect and looked up the victim's home address in a law enforcement database.
The second case published online details the actions of Deputy Juan Andrade, who allegedly groped a homeless woman after she reported she was the victim of a sexual assault. According to the report, Andrade admitted to kissing the woman, but said it was consensual.
He resigned in 2017 after an internal investigation into his behavior.
The Sheriff's Department said in a letter to KPBS Tuesday that it expects to publish more reports going forward.
The department is "in the process of reviewing, redacting, and producing records responsive to these requests," the letter said. "The Sheriffs Department intends to produce responsive records, free of charge, and post them on our public website."
KPBS has requested records of all local law enforcement agencies, but several police unions are suing to stop the disclosure. They argue that the new law should not apply retroactively, so that only future internal reports would be made public. A hearing on that case is scheduled for March 1.