Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Deputy Mike Chauvin Charged with Having Sex with Minor

A 23-year veteran deputy of the Harrison County Sheriff’s Department was in custody Wednesday, accused of having sex with a minor who often baby-sat his adolescent son at the deputy’s Orange Grove home, Harrison County Sheriff Melvin Brisolara said.

The sheriff said 48-year-old Mike Chauvin, who’s been serving as a school resource deputy at North Woolmarket Elementary School for the past eight years, initially was suspended with pay Monday night as soon as the parents of the victim, now 17, came in to report their suspicions about Chauvin possibly engaging in sex acts with their daughter.

Brisolara said the Sheriff’s Department started conducting an internal investigation, but quickly realized that the case was turning criminal and turned over their findings to the Gulfport Police Department because the crime allegedly occurred in their jurisdiction at Chauvin’s home. Gulfport police made the arrest Wednesday, charging Chauvin with one count of sexual battery.

The investigation is continuing to determine if other charges would be filed, such as an enhanced charge of sexual battery while in a position of trust or authority. The maximum penalty for sexual battery is 20 years in prison.

The sheriff said Chauvin apparently began a sexual relationship with the girl sometime after she started baby-sitting for him in the past two years. “She was younger (than 17) when this happened,” Brisolara said.

On Wednesday, Harrison County sheriff’s investigators were continuing to work with Gulfport investigators to determine if additional charges will follow.

Brisolara said he hadn’t spoken to Chauvin since the investigation started, adding “I have no intention of talking to him.”

Brisolara was working at the Sheriff’s Department when Chauvin, whom he described as a quiet man, joined the force, first serving as a reserve officer before going full-time and working over the years in patrols and community relations before taking over as a school resource officer. Brisolara said the complaint this week was the first the Sheriff’s Department has received against him during his tenure.

Since Brisolara started serving his first term in office, he said he’s had to get rid of other sheriff’s deputies for violating departmental policies and procedures, and “this is the first criminal case I’ve worked (involving a deputy) since I’ve been in office.”

The sheriff said Chauvin was terminated Wednesday. After his arrest, he was taken to the Harrison County jail, where Brisolara said Chauvin was being placed in isolation for safety reasons.

As for the investigation that led to the arrest of one of Brisolara’s own deputies, he said he had no regrets.

Corrections Deputy Carlos Lopez Arrested for Sexual Assault

A Mendocino County corrections deputy found himself on the wrong side of cell bars after he was arrested on suspicion of sexually assaulting a woman as she was being released from jail.

Authorities say Carlos Alberto Lopez was booked into Mendocino County Jail Tuesday after he was accused of unlawfully touching the woman as she was being released.

Mendocino County Sheriff Tom Allman says the arrest of the 38-year-old Lopez comes after investigations by the Sheriff's Department internal affairs division and the Mendocino County District Attorney's Office.

Lopez was released after posting $15,000 bail. He has been placed on paid administrative leave.


Information from: The Press Democrat,

Three LAPD Officers Charged with Perjury & Conspiracy

Three Los Angeles police officers were charged today with perjury and conspiracy for allegedly lying under oath in a drug possession case that was dismissed last year when a videotape sharply contradicted their testimony.

The felony charges were brought by the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office.

In February, the U.S. Justice Department opened its own investigation into the officers' actions.

At issue are the actions of officers at a Hollywood apartment complex where a security camera documented the 2007 arrest of Guillermo Alarcon Jr.

At Alarcon's trial last year, Officers Richard Amio and Evan Samuel testified that they were on patrol in Los Angeles when they chased Alarcon, 29, into his Hollywood apartment building. The officers told jurors that they saw him throw away a black object.

They testified that Samuel quickly picked up the object and found about $260 worth of powder and crack cocaine inside. But footage from a security camera at the apartment building, which is managed by Alarcon's mother, showed that officers searched for more than 20 minutes before an object allegedly containing cocaine was found.

They were aided by other officers, including Manuel Ortiz, who testified about the case at a preliminary hearing in January. The quality of the tape, a copy of which was obtained by The Times, is poor and it is difficult to clearly hear what is being said. But at one point, soon after the drugs were found, an officer seems to make a reference to the arrest report that needed to be filled out.

"Be creative in your writing," the officer appears to tell another after the discovery. Alarcon's attorney argued at trial that his client was innocent and that the officers had planted evidence and then lied about it.

After viewing the videotape, Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Monica Bachner dismissed the charges at the request of prosecutors. The judge also declared Alarcon factually innocent.,0,17370.story

Former Sheriff Chris Abril Now Charged with Larceny & DWI

Former Polk County Sheriff Chris Abril is now charged with larceny. He is accused of stealing booze from Elmos Pub. Tuesday night Abril was charged with driving while impaired.

Abril resigned as sheriff last year, a day before pleading guilty to two counts of soliciting indecent liberties with minors.

He was on probation when officers arrested him Tuesday.

They say he was swerving over the center line on South Trade Street near Pierces tire in Tryon.

The Polk County Sheriff’s Office has not released the entire report to News Channel 7. According to what we do have from the Sheriff’s Office, deputies pulled over their former boss after they say they saw him go left of center. They say Abril had an open container and failed roadside breathalizers.

Under the rules of his probation he is subject to drug and alcohol tests.

Pam Johnson says her bartender told Abril not to drive when he left Elmos pub and Grill Tuesday night, “He said he had one and someone did come in to drive him home and when they were leaving as far as we know that was his driver.“

Abril was released on his on recognizance but his drivers license was revoked.
He is scheduled for a hearing in November.

By the way Thursday is Abril’s 48th birthday.