Thursday, 02 February 2023

Former deputy arrested for sex with a minor

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Derik Navarro, 35, of Kelseyville. Photo courtesy lakesheriff.com

THIS STORY HAS BEEN UPDATED.

 
LAKEPORT – A week after his employment ended with the Lake County Sheriff's Office, a former deputy was arrested on felony charges of having sex with an underage girl and a misdemeanor charge involving a second minor female.


Derik Navarro, 35, of Kelseyville, faces a total of 18 felony counts and two misdemeanor counts of criminal wrongdoing, according to District Attorney Jon Hopkins.


In brief statements released Wednesday, Hopkins and Sheriff Rod Mitchell reported that Navarro had just been arrested that morning on charges of committing lewd and lascivious acts with a minor, sodomy with a minor and having sex with a minor under age 16.


Hopkins said the arrest followed a lengthy investigation by his office into allegations of sexual misconduct while Navarro was still a deputy sheriff.


Mitchell reported that his command staff received information on Jan. 23 that led to an internal investigation into “allegations of misconduct” by Navarro.


“The matter was of such consequence that we asked Lake County District Attorney investigators to conduct a separate and independent criminal investigation,” Mitchell stated.


Navarro was placed on administrative leave on Jan. 23, said Mitchell, pending the internal investigation's outcome.


The majority of the charges against Navarro involve a female juvenile, said Hopkins. Navarro is alleged to have had a sexual relationship with the 14-year-old girl from May 2005 through May 2006, after she had turned 15.


The complaint against Navarro also includes one misdemeanor charge stemming from his alleged involvement with a second female juvenile, Hopkins reported.

 

None of the alleged crimes took place while Navarro was on duty as a sheriff's deputy, Mitchell said.

 

Navarro joined LCSO in December 2002. Last week, on April 11, Navarro's employment with LCSO ended, Mitchell reported.


Chief DA Investigator Michael Clements arrested Navarro Wednesday on a felony arrest warrant issued by Superior Court Judge Richard Martin.


Navarro was booked into the Lake County Jail, with bail set at $20,000. A court appearance has been scheduled for April 20.


Mitchell thanked the District Attorney's Office for taking the lead in the investigation. “The DA's investigators' willingness to handle the criminal investigation into this matter allowed my staff to promptly focus on their administrative duties,” he said.


Mitchell said his department would release no other information on the matter. Instead, he deferred any other comment on the case to the District Attorney's Office, saying that state law prohibits him from “disclosing details of matters pertaining to personnel investigations and/or employee discipline.”


In an unusual footnote, last year Navarro was honored by the Lake Family Resource Center as Law Enforcement Officer of the Year for his work on domestic violence cases.


Hopkins asks anyone with information about the case to contact Chief DA Investigator Michael Clements or Deputy District Attorney John R. DeChaine, 263-2251.


E-mail Elizabeth Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


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