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Santa Barbara County Community Settles Lawsuit Over Alleged Series Of Rapes By Police Officer

Posted on Saturday, November 24, 2012 4:06pm

Santa Maria officials say they’ve settled a lawsuit involving allegations that a teenage police Explorer Scout was raped multiple times by a city police officer.

They say they reached a $185,000 settlement with the girl’s family.

The 17 year old girl told investigators that Officer Albert Covarrubias Junior threatened to kill her boyfriend if she didn’t have sex with him. An investigation led to an attempt to arrest the officer at a DUI checkpoint last January, and department officials say Covarubias was shot to death after he opened fire first.

The handling of the attempted arrest was controversial, but department officials said they had to act because officer was aware he was under investigation, and that witnesses, and the public were potentially at risk. The department’s chief received a non-confindence vote from officers, and he retired last summer.

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