Former SLO County deputy pleads not guilty to child sexual abuse

July 8, 2021


A former San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s correctional deputy pled not guilty on Thursday to nine counts of child sexual abuse.

James Peter Storton, 63, is charged with eight felony counts of child sexual abuse concerning multiple victims under the age of 14, and one count of lewd acts on a child over the age of 15. He allegedly molested his victims between 2013 through March 2021.

Deputies took Storton into custody on May 27. He was released on $100,000 bail shortly afterwards.

Prosecutors on Thursday asked the court to increase his bail, a request Superior Court Judge Dodie Harman denied.

Storton retired from the sheriff’s department in 2009, after 29 years. His brother Keith Storton is an Arroyo Grande city councilman.


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His wife will get his pension minus a piddly amount for restitution, how do you repay someone for potentially ruining their lives and their ability to make and maintain healthy, fulfilling relationships? Probably by giving him probation and fine and skirting it under the rug. This is probably the last we will hear about this case as they will make sure not to publicize the embarrassing results of the ‘trial’


His past co-workers and the employees of the SLO judicial system are walking on egg shells with him …They know he knows many secrets about them and their past and what he participated in while on duty … Besides what darkness these charges reveal about his off duty/ retirement life .. The good ole boy club is named appropriately for many reasons


Multiple victims under 14 and only $100,000 bail? Certainly is nice to be a cop, retired or not, or was it having a family member in politics?


Do we have to pay his retirement benefits while in prison? Seizure of these benefits would probably be a greater deterrent than jail time. Pensions are not 401k’s. It isn’t his money until we, the taxpayers, say it is.


As much as I agree with you, certainly your sentiment, I beg to differ about the pension “not being his until we say it is”

In fact, CAL PERS (if that is the pension plan he is part of ?) does belong to the employee,just like a 401k or a savings account. It is a monetary asset, Of course a judgement by the court could prove otherwise but it would have to be part of the adulation. Again, if he is Cal PERS.

In this case however, because he was a SLO County employee, he may be included in the county’s own defined benefit pension program. Someone out there probably knows the answer to that.

Adam Trask

Sorry, but he is duly entitled to his pension, for which he contributed to for over 29 years. Of course, if these charges are true, he’ll probably get 20 years in prison, meaning he might be able to spend some of his money on candy bars and pencils. The good thing here is that his retirement checks will be debited tens of thousands of dollars for restitution to the victims.



My point was that there is a lot of misconception about public employee pensions. Pensions are not discretionary handouts by employers for a career well done or good behavior. Public employees contribute a considerable amount of their own money over a period of decades into an account. It usually is in the range of 8-14 percent of each paycheck, public safety employees put in more but also get to retire earlier than misc employees. Notwithstanding arguments about exorbitant public pensions, ( save that one for another day) and so forth, the pension , public or private, is a financial instrument and a personal asset.

Also, the employer (in this case SLO County) makes an additional contribution, and then it is invested and that appreciation or return goes into the final calculation at retirement time. Pensions are not benevolent handout outs or bonuses from management; a nice little going away present after one retires.

Again, who knows what will happen after this goes through the courts, criminal, civil litigation etc…and like you said he could be on the hook for thousands of dollars if restitution. That has yet to be adjudicated.

Adam Trask

Well said, derasmus. We don’t agree on much, but you know what you’re talking about here.

No matter how big a scumbag this guy may have turned out to be, he did contribute, as you said, a significant chunk of this paycheck to CalPers and the the SLO retirement trust which then invested that money in the stock market, which, last time I checked had been steadily rising since around 2009—up about 26,000 points on the Dow Jones Industrial since Barack Obama took office.

I think, that if found guilty, he will forfeit quite a bit of his money to the victims, so it’s actually a good thing that he has that pension. Usually, victims get nothing because the perp had nothing.