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Ceres Police Department
Tuesday August 6th, 2013 :: 10:04 a.m. PDT


Ceres Police Officer Facing Criminal Charges

Ceres, CA – Officer Christopher Melton, a nine year veteran of Ceres Police Department, is being charged with misdemeanor 149 PC: assault by an officer under color of authority.

This charge arises out of an incident that occurred on April 13, 2013 when Ceres Police Officers took a suspect into custody at the 1600 block of Evans Road. A subsequent investigation questioning the amount of force used by Officer Melton during the incident commenced after another Ceres officer reported suspected misconduct to agency supervisors.

Officer Melton was placed on paid administrative leave, pending the outcome of the criminal and internal affairs investigations. The internal affairs investigation, which covers issues such as compliance with agency policies, procedures, and standards of conduct, is ongoing and no further information will be released at this time. The criminal investigation is separate and distinct, and accordingly, Ceres Police Department submitted the criminal case to the Stanislaus County District Attorney’s Office. The District Attorney's Office will not be commenting on the matter.

Chief de Werk said, “While these circumstances, as reported, are very unfortunate, it is highly appropriate that what took place on April 13th is being handled by the District Attorney’s Office. Officer Melton’s conduct, as alleged, does not reflect the values of Ceres Police Department or the law enforcement community as a whole. The fact that this incident was reported and is being examined in the context of criminal law, and internal departmental procedures, reminds us that the system does and can work to retain the public trust.”

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Ceres Police Department
2727 3rd St
Ceres, CA 95307

Emergency: 9-1-1
Non-emergencies: 209-538-5712

Carissa Higginbotham

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