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Any victims of former Palmdale sheriff's deputy urged to come forward

Valencia resident pleaded no contest to rape under color of authority, soliciting a bribe

Posted: March 18, 2014 6:20 p.m.
Updated: March 18, 2014 6:20 p.m.

The woman raped by a convicted former sheriff’s deputy now awaiting an eight-year prison sentence said she wants any other victims to come forward with their stories, according to her lawyer.

On Thursday, former Palmdale sheriff’s deputy Jose Rigoberto Sanchez, 29, of Valencia, entered a plea to one count each of rape under color of authority and soliciting a bribe before Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Maral Injejikian.

On April 4, Sanchez will be sentenced to eight years and eight months in prison. He also must register as a sex offender, according to a news release issued by the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office last week.

Sanchez’s victim is now the plaintiff in a lawsuit filed against Los Angeles County. She and her lawyers allege county representatives did not act promptly enough when concerns were first raised about Sanchez.

“She is relieved he is no longer a deputy, and that he can no longer be able to hurt anyone,” Attorney John C. Taylor of Taylor & Ring, LLP, told The Signal a day after Sanchez entered his “no contest” plea in San Fernando Superior Court.

“She’s pleased with the sentence that is projected. And she’s pleased he is incarcerated, not only for her safety but for others.

“We’re confident there are other victims,” Taylor said. “In the three years, there were other victims in the Palmdale area.”

In court proceedings Thursday, Deputy District Attorney Rosa Alarcon of the Justice System Integrity Division said Sanchez was on duty Sept. 22, 2010, when he pulled over a 24-year-old female driver who had an outstanding warrant.
Sanchez offered not to arrest the woman if she had sex with him. He then drove away with the victim into the desert where he raped her, the prosecutor said.
Two nights later, he pulled over a 36-year-old woman for investigation of DUI and solicited a bribe in the form of sexual activity.
The case was investigated by the Sheriff’s Department’s Internal Criminal Investigations Bureau.
Sanchez, a seven-year veteran of the Palmdale Sheriff’s Station, was arrested at his home on Montevista Court, in the area of Decoro Drive and Copper Hill Drive, on July 29, 2013, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

He was relieved of duty with pay after the 2010 incident, and was relieved of duty without pay on the day of his arrest.
On Twittter @jamesarthurholt


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