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Charges dismissed in hidden camera case involving former Cal Poly military official

Posted at 4:46 PM, Jul 17, 2023

Local charges against the former head of Cal Poly's Military Science Department who was accused of placing a hidden camera in a dressing room at the Pismo Beach Premium Outlets have been dismissed.

San Luis Obispo County District Attorney Dan Dow said his office asked the court to dismiss the case against Jacob Sweatland in order to relinquish jurisdiction to the U.S. Army.

According to Dow, Sweatland was an active-duty soldier in the Army at the time of the alleged crime, and last week, the Army started a criminal court-martial proceeding against him.

"In 2023, California law has very limited criminal sanctions available for someone charged with the crimes Mr. Sweatland committed," Dow told KSBY. "We have confidence that the U.S. Army will obtain an appropriate resolution that appropriately addresses the significance of harm caused by his actions."

Police said they discovered the hidden camera on September 2, 2022. Sweatland was arrested a couple of days later when he returned to the store claiming he had left something behind, according to police.

Following his arrest, Army representatives said he had been removed from his department chair position at Cal Poly and barred from campus.

Sweatland faced charges of privacy and obstructing a peace officer.

In April, he was denied participation in a military diversion program.