A San Fernando police officer has been charged with stealing money from a domestic violence suspect who was being arrested, Los Angeles County prosecutors announced Thursday.
Officer Jeffrey King was responding to a domestic violence call at a San Fernando home on June 21, 2022, when he allegedly took a cellphone and cash from the man’s pockets while he was restrained, according to prosecutors.
The man was ultimately arrested and booked into jail. He reported that he was missing money he had in his pocket during the arrest when he was released two days later.
King, 37, turned in the cellphone to a supervisor but the cash was never booked into evidence or returned to the suspect, prosecutors said. Authorities did not specify the amount of money involved.
San Fernando’s police chief referred the matter to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department for a criminal investigation.
King is charged with one felony count each of second-degree robbery and extortion and one misdemeanor count of petty theft.
“Law enforcement officers take an oath to uphold the law, not to break it. Maintaining integrity is a fundamental principle of law enforcement and stealing personal belongings during an arrest is a clear violation of that trust,” Dist. Atty. George Gascón said in a statement. “No one should have their rights compromised, especially by those who are tasked with protecting them. “
King is set to be arraigned in the coming weeks, and a warrant was issued for him Tuesday. He was not in custody as of Thursday afternoon, according to sheriff’s jail records.
When reached for comment Thursday, San Fernando police did not immediately clarify whether King was continuing to work as a police officer.