An independent investigation by the Santa Barbara County District Attorney’s Office has found no evidence of criminal violations by Santa Maria police personnel in connection with the officer-involved shooting death of Officer Alberto Covarrubias Jr.
The DA’s investigation was conducted following disciplinary action taken by Santa Maria Police Chief Ralph Martin against nine officers in connection with the January 2012 shooting death.
“Based upon our independent review, we find there is no evidence of underlying criminal violations by any Santa Maria Police Department personnel with respect to this matter,” District Attorney Joyce Dudley said in a statement Tuesday.
Dudley expressed her “gratitude” to Chief Martin “for his diligence, cooperation and unrelenting professionalism in the way he has handled this most difficult matter.”
Martin’s disciplinary actions followed the completion of an internal affairs investigation into the Jan. 28, 2012, shooting of Covarrubias, 29, who was shot and killed by a fellow officer as police supervisors tried to arrest him in connection with his alleged illegal sexual relationship with a 17-year-old police Explorer Scout.