Third Lompoc police officer arrested this year

October 21, 2014

LompocSanta Barbara County Sheriff’s deputies arrested a Lompoc police officer accused of assaulting his girlfriend on Sunday, marking the third arrest of a member of the Lompoc Police Department this year. [KEYT]

Deputies responded to call from a neighbor about a domestic dispute at a Vandenberg Village home Sunday morning. The deputies arrested 29-year-old Lompoc police detective Matthew Hill and charged him with assault.

Hill, a five-year veteran of the department, is now on paid administrative leave. Lompoc police are conducting an internal investigation into the incident, in addition to the legal case.

Prior to Hill’s arrest, Lompoc officer David Garcia was arrested in March for driving under the influence and Sergeant Joseph Stetz was arrested in May for felony vandalism and making criminal threats. Stetz’s charges also stemmed from a domestic dispute, while Garica wound up in handcuffs after he crashed his car into a tree and took off while on duty.

After Hill’s arrest, Lompoc Police Chief Patrick Walsh said he is taking the incidents very seriously.

“We work at the will of the people, and they need to trust us,” Walsh said. “I think the law is the law, and everybody should be held to the same.”

In addition to the arrests of officers, another Lompoc city employee was arrested earlier this month. On Oct. 7, parks and recreation worker Kelly Didrickson allegedly backed a city vehicle into another car and drove off while under the influence of alcohol.

Don’t miss breaking news stories, like CalCoastNews on Facebook.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

An arrest for criminal malfeasance is a far cry from a conviction for criminal malfeasance.

High probability the jury will be tainted by ass-kissing cop-lovers.

“Of course you can trust me, I’m a cop” – Richard Gere as Dennis Peck in “Internal Affairs”.

But Rich, it does not sound like it is just the PD, leadership is all the way up, Manager and City Council. Sounds like a job for the Grand Jury.

The Fish Rots from the Head Down….

When you have this many incidents it usually points to poor leadership at the top or the organization. I think the chief of Police needs to go.

Just for the record it is a new chief in Lompoc I think he has two weeks on the job. So hopefully he is there to clean up shop

Still, I’d much rather he did not use “I think” in his quote:

“I think the law is the law, and everybody should be held to the same.”

Much better to just say, “the law is the law” – no room for personal interpretation, implied or otherwise.

Still, I wish this new chief luck in our public employee culture of incestuous depravity that festers on the central coast.