Officers who are being investigated by internal affairs typically face departmental discipline and…depending on the circumstances... sometimes even criminal charges. That’s currently the situation for a rookie Los Angeles Police Department officer who has resigned pending the results of his internal affairs investigation.
The officer is accused of illegally tapping into a police computer system to obtain personal information about two key witnesses who testified during a trial that resulted in a murder conviction for the defendant. The defendant is a gang-member who was convicted of a drive-by shooting. The officer had been dating the defendant’s sister for several years.
The LAPD referred the case to internal affairs when a detective heard the defendant refer to the officer during phone calls he made to his family from jail. Then, internal affairs was listening in on a conversation two days after the defendant was convicted when he told his father that he had the officer “running their names” so that “they could get a hold of them”. That was the same day the officer illegally accessed the police database.
Once internal affairs concludes its investigation, the Los Angeles D.A.’s office will review the case to determine whether to file criminal charges.