- Officer Matthew Dominguez and two other officers were dispatched during the incident
- Dominguez exposed himself in front of female members of the family in the house
- He was arrested and faces a misdemeanor indecent exposure charge
A California cop was arrested for allegedly masturbating on duty while responding to a call about a domestic disturbance.
Officer Matthew Dominguez, 32, who has been on the force for four years, was arrested Thursday and charged with indecent exposure.
Dominguez and two other officers were dispatched on April 21 to a house in San Jose after a call was made about a mentally ill family member being violent, NBC Bay Area reported. After starting the initial investigation, Dominguez sent the two other officers to locate the subject while he stayed back talking to the family members.
Dominguez is said to have “touched himself in front of two female family members. Subsequent to this, Dominguez exposed himself to the mother,” said the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office statement.
The victims were “shocked and scared” and informed two male relatives nearby about the officer’s actions. One of the male relatives went to the dining area to find Dominguez exposing himself.
“The charged behavior is beyond disturbing,” District Attorney Jeff Rosen said in the statement. “Law enforcement officers respond to our homes to help crime victims, not terrorize, traumatize, and create new victims.”
Dominguez will be arrainged on a misdemeanor indecent exposure charge in June. If convicted, he could be put behind bars for a year and be placed on the sexual offender’s list for 10 years.
A video of Police Chief Anthony Mata walking Dominguez out of the Internal Affairs Office of the department was released on YouTube.
“Last week I said that when an officer violated the public’s trust or engages in criminal conduct I would personally walk that Officer out the door. Today I did it,” Mata said, according to the New York Post.
The incident joins a series of recent allegations of misconduct involving San Jose police officers. One officer was placed on leave for being drunk while at the scene of a baby’s kidnapping last month. Another officer, De’Jon Packer, lost his life in March, and the cause of his death was determined as fentanyl toxicity from substance abuse, according to CBS News.
The police department and Mayor Sam Liccardo also confirmed Thursday that another officer allegedly gave a woman a methamphetamine pipe in exchange for information; he was placed on leave months ago.
Mayor Liccardo called these instances a “drumbeat of serious transgressions by young officers in SJPD.”
“In my view, two things are equally true. First, we have a serious problem in SJPD that requires remedial action immediately,” the mayor said. “Second, these officers do not represent the very high moral and professional standards upheld by 99% of the hardworking SJPD officers protecting our community today.”
Mata proposed making changes to the disciplinary process that would give him the leeway to speak publicly about cases where he believes terminating the officer is the only option.
“l reiterate – when an officer violates the public’s trust, they will be held accountable,” Mata said in a Thursday statement. “When an officer is convicted of criminal conduct, I will personally walk them out the door.”