A Santa Maria police officer who was fatally shot early Saturday morning by another officer after he reportedly resisted arrest, was identified Sunday by a family member as Albert Covarrubias Jr.

The shooting occurred about 1:20 a.m. when two supervising officers attempted to arrest Covarrubias, who was on duty, for allegedly having sex with a 17-year-old girl.

Covarrubias, a four-year member of the Santa Maria Police Department, was breaking down a DUI checkpoint at McElhaney Avenue and Broadway when the officers attempted to arrest him.

He allegedly resisted arrest and fired his handgun, prompting another officer to return fire.

Santa Maria Police Lt. James Ginter would not confirm the identify of the officer who fired the fatal shot, but he has been identified by local media as officer Matthew Kline.

Santa Maria Police Chief Danny Macagni said during a press conference Saturday that the officer, as is routine in police-involved shootings, had been placed on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of internal and external investigations.

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department is investigating the shooting.

(14) comments

Dorothys100
Dorothys100

First I'd like to give my sympathies and condolences to the family and friends of the killed officer.

Please don't think this case can be swept under the carpet. To many questions remain with fishy circumstances that raise a red flag of suspicion that the public wants to know.

Dorothys100
Dorothys100

My condolences and sympathy to the officers family and friends who sadly weren't even mentioned.

There's definitely a cover-up going on here and this officer might have been shot and killed on purpose. And for the Police Chief to slander his name by saying he won't be honored is shameful.

Officer Covarrubias Jr. was not charged in the court of law and is innocent until proven guilty and a thorough investigation [must] be done. This officer [must] be buried with full honors, as all others are.

After learning that the 17 year old girl was a cadet who rode around regularly with other officers, one can only imagine who else she may have been involved with and we want the truth to come out in court with her testimony and all officers who witnessed this tragedy.

It's to late to save face, a man was killed, a tragic end of his life who wasn't just molested. There's much more to this story than what's being told. I will be at court to hear the testimonies. Justice will be served!


BravoEcho
BravoEcho

The root irony in this is that this 17 year old who is deemed too young to consent to having sex has, by law, the right to obtain birth control services, prenatal care, sexually transmitted infection/HIV services and abortion without parental notification or permission. Only in Kaliforica!

san diego
san diego

As an outsider, this headline caught my attention. The story does not seem plausible. It appears something more was going on besides an isolated incident with this girl. I agree with those who want an outside investigation, testimony from the 17 yr. old, policeman (men?) who shot the officer. I have heard that police departments have "special units" to deal with "problems." I hope the people of Santa Maria will get the truth.

MSIMPSON
MSIMPSON

Santa Maria Police Department is corrupt!

Swabbie
Swabbie

Putting all things together it truly is a sad event....when a newly married officer chose to have an illegal relationship with a seventeen year old female (before/after he was married?), he chose to resist, he chose to pull and fire his weapon. He chose his path despite the support he would have had from those who loved him. Who knows what the seventeen year old expected/demanded from him that caused him to do other illegal acts. It all came crushing down around him the other morning...and he chose..... It's truly a troubling time for our community. Now the seventeen year old has to live with the choices she made which contributed to the events leading up to the death of an officer. I hope she makes better ones in the future.

Concerned Tax Payer
Concerned Tax Payer

First, shame on this officer if he did commit the crime he is accused of. However, as a concerned tax payer, I would really like to understand what the Police Command Staff is doing. This is the third Santa Maria Police office shot in several months. In the previous shooting two officers were shot in a situation where they were going to arrest a known very bad guy. Why was the SWAT team not utilized here? Who made this decision to not use SWAT and why? In this current situation, there is absolutely no reason that SM PD Officers should have been used to execute an arrest of a co-worker...Why was the Sheriff's dept not used or another agency. It is a shame to hear of these types of issues that appear to be a direct result of decisions made by the command staff. This officer could still be alive and his co-worker not have to live with the fact that he shot and killed his co-worked and I suspect his friend. What is the Police Association doing to investigate the Command Staff to determine if there is a level of competence to enable them to execute the job duties and activities effectively and efficiently such that they do not introduce risk into the very job that already has a significant level of risk involved. I also hope that the community rallies behind the patrol officers and supports them in this time of need. My wishes for safety and security go out to all of the dept.

Maya
Maya

Someone asked why not use the swat team and why are there not more officers on the street. There is no money and when a large part of the population sucks money from the city coffers while others go elsewhere to shop to avoid those who are the core problem there is not enough money coming in and way to much going out to support those who should not even be here.

Maya
Maya

Dorothys100 said "There's definitely a cover-up going on here and this officer might have been shot and killed on purpose. And for the Police Chief to slander his name by saying he won't be honored is shameful."

Yes, Dorothy it had nothing to do with him pulling his gun and shooting at other officer's and for sure for sure we should honor him for going out by suicide by cop. That did save the tax payers tons of money in court cost and prison after all, so have to give him props for that.

OGFROMSM
OGFROMSM

[quote]MSIMPSON said: "Santa Maria Police Department is corrupt!"[/quote]

SMPD Danny talks about gangs he run's one him salf..........

Doc Holiday
Doc Holiday

This is getting to be just like Mexico...only more dangerous.

LiveFreeorDie
LiveFreeorDie

[quote]Swabbie said: "Putting all things together it truly is a sad event....when a newly married officer chose to have an illegal relationship with a seventeen year old female (before/after he was married?), he chose to resist, he chose to pull and fire his weapon. He chose his path despite the support he would have had from those who loved him. Who knows what the seventeen year old expected/demanded from him that caused him to do other illegal acts. It all came crushing down around him the other morning...and he chose..... It's truly a troubling time for our community. Now the seventeen year old has to live with the choices she made which contributed to the events leading up to the death of an officer. I hope she makes better ones in the future."[/quote]

Couldn't have said it better myself. In addition to this - THANKFULLY only the "bad guy" was shot. It could have been so much worse. You're free to make a choice. Of course, you have to live or die with the consequences.

My sympathies and condolences to the killed officer. The action of one, affects so many.

manuelochoajr
manuelochoajr

There has got to be way more to the story. Messing around with an explorer. Yeah, thats never happened. ( sarcasm ) Either it was another cops daughter, or two cops were fighting over her, or its all made up as an excuse to get rid of this cop. Whatever, something isnt right. The official story sounds like a load. I suppose his vest just happened to be missing that day, too. Sounds more like a hit than an arrest.

HereWeAre
HereWeAre

[quote]Maya said: "Dorothys100 said "There's definitely a cover-up going on here and this officer might have been shot and killed on purpose. And for the Police Chief to slander his name by saying he won't be honored is shameful." Yes, Dorothy it had nothing to do with him pulling his gun and shooting at other officer's and for sure for sure we should honor him for going out by suicide by cop. That did save the tax payers tons of money in court cost and prison after all, so have to give him props for that. "[/quote]

Oh yes let's honor a criminal cop that did'nt have the guts to turn himself in! In true macho form, he went out with a bang and tried to take some with him! If I was related to him, shame would be what I felt. Not playing the blame game on everyone else.

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