The investigation into Patrick Smith, a 15-year veteran who worked alone on a motorcycle assignment in the department’s West Traffic Division, found he was stopping Latinos based on their race and deliberately misidentifying some Latinos as white on his reports — presumably in an effort to conceal the fact that the people he pulled over were overwhelmingly Latino, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the case who requested that their names not be used because police personnel issues are confidential.
Actor George Clooney, center, Rep. Jim Moran, D-Va, back, and Clooney’s father, Nick Clooney, right, are arrested during a protest at the Sudanese Embassy in Washington, March 16, 2012. (Cliff Owen/AP Photo)
A former Fullerton police officer was charged Tuesday with destroying evidence by smashing a digital audio recorder that would have captured his conversations with a 52-year-old man who later committed suicide in the city jail.
Vincent Thomas Mater, 41, is charged with one misdemeanor count of destruction of evidence in a death investigation and one misdemeanor count of vandalism. If convicted, he faces up to 18 months in jail.