Another SDPD Cop Under Investigation

Another SDPD Cop Under Investigation

File photo by Sam Hodgson

Police Chief Bill Lansdowne

 

The Chula Vista Police Department announced today that another San Diego police officer is under criminal investigation. The case has been referred to prosecutors for possible charges, police said, but other details are scarce at this point.

Chula Visa police said they contacted an off-duty San Diego police officer May 20 “based on observations made by another motorist.” Police did not identify the officer or provide any other information about the incident. The officer has not been arrested, police said.

San Diego Police spokeswoman Lt. Andra Brown told Fox 5 that the 19-year veteran has been placed on unpaid administrative leave while the department conducts its own internal investigation.

Citing anonymous sources, CBS 8 and Channel 10 have identified the officer as Michael Edwards, 51. CBS 8 reported that he is under investigation for DUI and resisting arrest.

With the announcement, the officer becomes the 11th San Diego police officer currently under criminal or internal investigation. The allegations against the officers include drunken driving, harassment, assault, excessive force, theft, domestic violence, sexual assault and rape.

Mayor Jerry Sanders and Police Chief Bill Lansdowne have called the spike in alleged misconduct a public embarrassment and a signal of greater problems in the department. Four days before the penultimate incident, the chief unveiled a seven-point plan to address it.

Last week, Lansdowne also said he would expand alcohol counseling resources in response to recent events. Before today’s announcement, two officers had been arrested on charges of felony drunk driving and one of them had enrolled in a treatment facility, according to court records.

Police and researchers have pointed to numerous factors behind the recent spike, including more stress among officers, reduced supervision and the fewer resources for internal oversight. Shortly after he became the city’s police chief in 2003, for example, Lansdowne disbanded a unit aimed at proactively investigating serious or criminal misconduct among officers. In 2004, he dropped the position of full-time drug and alcohol counselor and shifted the responsibility to two part-time assignments.

Brown said she will be available for questions about the new case this afternoon. If police release more information, I’ll write another post on this blog.

Please contact Keegan Kyle directly at keegan.kyle@voiceofsandiego.org or 619.550.5668 and follow him on Twitter: twitter.com/keegankyle.

 

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Keegan Kyle

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16 comments
joe vargo
joe vargo subscriber

wow budro smith, you must have one of those chrome sit and spins!

joev
joev

wow budro smith, you must have one of those chrome sit and spins!

Jim Jones
Jim Jones subscriber

The problem isn't money, cops get plenty of that, the problem is the lackadaisical practices and attitudes in the SDPD. It's time for heads to roll and complete, external review of the SDPD from hiring practices to enforcement practices to internal reports to random drug and alcohol testing to take place. Spring cleaning is overdue.

Jim Jones
Jim Jones

The problem isn't money, cops get plenty of that, the problem is the lackadaisical practices and attitudes in the SDPD. It's time for heads to roll and complete, external review of the SDPD from hiring practices to enforcement practices to internal reports to random drug and alcohol testing to take place. Spring cleaning is overdue.

Wes Warner
Wes Warner subscriber

The Chief's web page makes for interesting reading in light of his apathetic approach to recent crimes and incidents of misconduct.

Ready2Riot
Ready2Riot

The Chief's web page makes for interesting reading in light of his apathetic approach to recent crimes and incidents of misconduct.

Rick Mueller
Rick Mueller subscriber

Under "investigation" for a DUI arrest? If he has not been arrested YET, is he going to get preferential treatment? Does one more pending criminal case really add any serious harm to the remaining reputation of this once fine department? Is the looming question of preference really worth it? Since the statute of limitations is one year, maybe they're waiting for things to cool off before prosecuting; that way folks may forget about this by the time the DA files the actual complaint.

San Diego County DUI Law Center
San Diego County DUI Law Center

Under "investigation" for a DUI arrest? If he has not been arrested YET, is he going to get preferential treatment? Does one more pending criminal case really add any serious harm to the remaining reputation of this once fine department? Is the looming question of preference really worth it? Since the statute of limitations is one year, maybe they're waiting for things to cool off before prosecuting; that way folks may forget about this by the time the DA files the actual complaint.

Tracey McNeel
Tracey McNeel subscriber

As being a small pool of people who have power and are paid well, the police department, oh yeah, there is going to be a lot more of awful news on the media, ever more so when it comes to the peoples who are of UPPER ECHELON and all their accountabilities of their ill-willed self willed actions from them. I am tired of them going after the small guys, when I personally know that the majority of vile happenings to criminal activities mainly derive from those of Great Wealth and Power.

GalaxianStar
GalaxianStar

As being a small pool of people who have power and are paid well, the police department, oh yeah, there is going to be a lot more of awful news on the media, ever more so when it comes to the peoples who are of UPPER ECHELON and all their accountabilities of their ill-willed self willed actions from them. I am tired of them going after the small guys, when I personally know that the majority of vile happenings to criminal activities mainly derive from those of Great Wealth and Power.

Wes Warner
Wes Warner subscriber

I'm lost all faith and trust in our police. Someone should organize a protest. Personally, I'll be sending a package of old bacon addressed to Lansdowne with my demand for his resignation.

Ready2Riot
Ready2Riot

I'm lost all faith and trust in our police. Someone should organize a protest. Personally, I'll be sending a package of old bacon addressed to Lansdowne with my demand for his resignation.

Mark Giffin
Mark Giffin subscribermember

normal stat or not is the question.

mgland
mgland

normal stat or not is the question.

Brenda Ryan
Brenda Ryan subscriber

Is this chief ever going to be held responsible for the action of his officers? There appears to be no oversight of officers! He needs to go. Prior to his arrival, the SDPD had an international reputation as an excellent department and was a leader in community policing. Now the department is a joke that acts reactively instead of proactively. At a time when the department should be using sworn officers for police work, this chief wants them to handle abandoned vehicle abatement and other projects that do not require the skills of sworn officers. This chief needs to go before the department's credibility is totally destroyed!

Yikess
Yikess

Is this chief ever going to be held responsible for the action of his officers? There appears to be no oversight of officers! He needs to go. Prior to his arrival, the SDPD had an international reputation as an excellent department and was a leader in community policing. Now the department is a joke that acts reactively instead of proactively. At a time when the department should be using sworn officers for police work, this chief wants them to handle abandoned vehicle abatement and other projects that do not require the skills of sworn officers. This chief needs to go before the department's credibility is totally destroyed!