California District Attorney Charges 7 Police Officers in Sex Abuse Scandal

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Alameda County prosecutors announced criminal charges against seven San Francisco Bay Area police officers for their role in a wide-ranging and still unfolding scandal involving a sexually exploited teenager.

Five of the officers are past or current members of the Oakland Police Department. One is a former officer in nearby Livermore, Calif., and the other is a former sheriff’s deputy in adjacent Contra Costa County.

The charges range from oral copulation with a minor, engaging in acts of prostitution, obstruction of justice, failure to report sexual misconduct involving a minor, and unauthorized access to a criminal justice computer system.

The charges come after what District Attorney Nancy O’Malley says was an exhaustive investigation of a scandal precipitated by the suicide of Oakland officer Brendan O’Brien a year ago. He reportedly said in a note he left that he and other officers had sexual contact with the victim, now 19 years old, officially referred to as “Ms. A.”

“We left no stone unturned,” said O’Malley. She acknowledged that she was only acting against law enforcement officers within her jurisdiction. In July, the 19-year-old woman told the San Francisco Chronicle that she had had sexual relations with 29 officers from various police agencies in the past two years. The other agencies include the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office, the police departments of San Francisco and Richmond, and the U.S. military’s Defense Logistics Agency.

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SOURCE: NPR, Richard Gonzales