OCDA Charges Former Fullerton Police Officer with Destroying Evidence

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Davis Barber
And the bad news just keeps rolling in for the Fullerton Police Department. Today the Orange County District Attorney's Office charged 41-year-old former FPD officer Vincent Thomas Mater with one misdemeanor count of destroying evidence relevant to the in-custody death of Dean Gochenour

On April 14, 2011 Mater arrested Gochenour on suspicion of driving under the influence and transported him to the Fullerton Police station. Mater, like other officers in the department, was wearing an FPD issued audio recording device on his person which would have recorded statements made by both parties. 


Gocehnour reportedly hung himself in his jail cell at 11:30 p.m. 

The OCDA's office, responsible for investigating most deaths occurring in police custody, says in the hours following Gochenour's death, Mater crushed his audio recorder and removed the circuit and mother boards. 

"The defendant is accused of destroying evidence that would have been relevant to the OCDA's custodial death investigation," a DA press release reads. 


But the department, besieged by bad press in the wake of the 37-year-old homeless man's death, has seen multiple officers accused of illegal conduct. Last May, officer Kelly Janeth Mejia was arrested for stealing an iPad in a Miami Airport. In September of last year, a federal judge blasted the department for its handling of allegation's that one of its officers,  Albert Rincon, was sexually harassing female detainees. Rincon was also accused of turning off his audio recorder, a violation of department policy. 

Mater is scheduled to be arraigned March 26 at the North Justice Center in Fullerton. To read the DA's full report of the custodial-death investigation of Gochenour, visit www.Orange CountyDA.com.

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7 comments
 Scott Janssen
Scott Janssen

Hi Bridget, my name is Scott Janssen.I grew up with your father and I just learned of his passing, over a year has passed but I wanted to extend my condolences to you and your family.

bridget wiseman
bridget wiseman

Hi, this is Deans daughter. On Saturday, March 17th 2012, there is a planned protest.

I will be at the Fullerton Police Department at noon with my signs! Feel free to come earlier. We need to bring a voice to not only my father but all the other people who have been affected negatively by this department. Please bring you and friends. Even if you are only there for a half hour, it will mean a lot.

Post this on your facebooks. Let's use todays social media as a way of provoking change and thought. This is important and a beautiful opportunity to positively influence your community that you live in!

If you want more information please visit DEAN GOCHENOUR's Facebook page. It will constantly be updated and friend request it as well. There have been several people who have not known my dad but support the cause.

Thank you for the support and positive thoughts!

420
420

Fuck the police. Hope that cop gets a look at the other side of a locked door.

Ron Moore
Ron Moore

Great!!!His actions were even founded to be guilty be a DA that just loves cops!Hopefully this will be a precursor to a multi-million dollar lawsuit against the city of Fullerton, thanks to ANOTHER dirty deeder and more covering up to boot.

909Jeff
909Jeff

Dude... How posh are the OC jails if he was in his own cell?  Out here in the IE if you're arrested you go to West Valley. they put you in the drunk tank with about 30 other drunk assholes... Do they offer room service in fullerton jail too? 

Streets
Streets

A man died and your concerned with jail space........nice guy Jeff..........

909Jeff
909Jeff

People die everyday... What are you gonna do?  

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