A California Highway Patrol officer is in custody today, accused of inappropriately touching a young man in an Arden Fair Mall bathroom while off-duty earlier this summer, according to Sacramento police.
Officers booked Jeffery Closson, 47, into the Sacramento County Main Jail this afternoon on suspicion of sexual battery and disorderly conduct, according to jail booking records. By late afternoon, he had been released on $5,000 bail.
According to Sacramento police, a 22-year-old disabled man reported being inappropriately touched by a man in an Arden Fair Mall bathroom on June 20. Officers reviewed surveillance footage, developed leads in the case and eventually identified Closson as a possible suspect, said police spokesman Officer Doug Morse.
Police and the District Attorney's office obtained a warrant for Closson's arrest today, and took him into custody.
The CHP has launched an internal investigation into the matter, Morse said.
Closson, a 25-year veteran, is on administrative leave from the CHP as the agency's internal review continues, spokeswoman Fran Clader said today. He most recently was assigned to the air operations division.
"The allegations that have been brought forward are disturbing. Even as the alleged incident occurred while the employee was off duty, the CHP takes any allegation of misconduct by its employees seriously," according to a statement released by Clader. "If the allegations in this case are proven true, the department will impose discipline up to and including dismissal of the employee."
The statement went on to say that the allegations do not reflect "the values, hard work, dedication and professionalism of the CHP and all of its more than 11,000 employees ... ."