Police officers at the scene of City Council District 3 candidate John Hartley’s arrest last week collected DNA evidence from him, according to highly placed sources in the San Diego Police Department.

Hartley was arrested last week after witnesses allegedly told police they saw him urinating in a cup and masturbating in a truck, which was parked on a Kensington street.

“You had two witnesses and [the police officers] collected evidence that will have to be tested,” one of the sources said.

Detective Gary Hassen of the SDPD’s Media Relations Department wouldn’t comment on this specific case, but said police usually collect DNA evidence only if they suspect the individual has committed a felony.

According to the one page of the incident report released by the Police Department, police officers impounded three pieces of evidence from the scene. My sources said that evidence included a T-shirt that Hartley had allegedly used to cover himself, and a mouth-swab taken at the scene to collect a sample of Hartley’s DNA.

The sources were granted anonymity because the report has not yet been made public.

We have made an official request for the full police report under the California Public Records Act.

Update: Hassen called back to clarify that the police do not only take DNA samples when an individual is suspected of committing a felony. He said there are certain instances in which an individual could be suspected of a misdemeanor but police officers still take DNA samples. He said he does not know exactly what Hartley has been charged with.


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