Apr 7, 2014 6:06 PM by KSBY Staff
Misdemeanor charges have been filed against a veteran Lompoc police officer accused of driving under the influence in the city last month.
A prosecutor with the Santa Barbara County District Attorney's Office tells KSBY News misdemeanor DUI and hit-and-run charges were filed against David Garcia Friday.
Last month, sources told KSBY News Garcia was off duty when he allegedly crashed his personal vehicle into a tree on the 200 block of North H Street around 12:45 a.m. March 7.
According to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office, Lompoc police called sheriff's deputies to the 100 block of W. Oak Avenue around 1:15 a.m. after an officer saw a driver hit a tree in a median on North H Street and keep going.
Sheriff's officials say Garcia was identified after he pulled over on W. Oak, and, shortly after, the officer determined Garcia may have been under the influence of alcohol.
The officer requested the assistance of the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office to conduct a DUI investigation.
Lompoc Captain Don Deming said the investigation was turned over to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office to avoid a conflict of interest.
Garcia was arrested for DUI and later cite released to his wife's care, officials say.
Officials with Lompoc police say Garcia returned to full duty at the police station after being off for a few days following the incident.
"After the completion of an internal affairs investigation and the court case, that's when we will review his status on the Lompoc Police Department," says Lompoc Police Department Captain Ed Lardner.
Garcia's arraignment is scheduled for next week.
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