Ex-Cop Crossed Line During Pat Down: Witness

The teenager suing the city of San Diego for $500k said she felt Anthony Arevalos crossed the line when he searched her pockets for drugs

By R. Stickney and Steven Luke
|  Wednesday, Nov 2, 2011  |  Updated 5:15 PM PDT
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Victim Struggled Against Ex-Cop

Arevalos consults with his attorneys during opening statements.

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Victim Struggled Against Ex-Cop

A young woman describes her horrifying account of a late night arrest by former San Diego police officer Anthony Arevalos. Steven Luke reports.
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A woman claiming she was sexually assaulted by a former San Diego police officer during an alcohol-related traffic stop was back on the stand, but this time she was defending her own actions.

Anthony Arevalos faces 21 felony charges stemming from late night traffic stops involving attractive young women in the Gaslamp Quarter.

Some claim he groped them and sexually assaulted them while being detained on suspicion of DUI. Others claim he attempted to negotiate sexual favors in exchange for not issuing tickets.

Melissa W. is one of the seven victims listed on the criminal complaint.

She claims that during a suspected DUI stop in October 2010, Arevalos asked her about her private body parts, touched her breasts and put his hand down her pants.

Melissa W. testified Wednesday that if she flashed her breasts and allowed the former officer to put his hands down her pants, she understood that she could avoid a DUI citation.

She testified that after she flashed him, Arevalos put his hand in her pants and moved his hand from front to back.

Arevalos eventually called a cab and let her go without so much as ticket telling her “I’ll see you soon” she said.

When Arevalos' defense attorney brought to light a recent DUI stop involving Melissa W. from last month where she tried to get out of it by telling the officers about her role as a witness in this trial, things got heated in the courtroom.

“I don't care if I got pulled over for a DUI the next day,” she testified. ”It doesn't change the effects of October 22nd and your client and what he did to me."

Another prosecution witness, Marci Rivera, who is not a victim on the criminal complaint, testified Officer Arevalos crossed the line during a pat down after she crashed into a parked car while driving drunk.

"It wasn't so much the breasts, it was the bottom part. It was more the hands going inside the front pockets, going towards the crotch and groin and back pockets," Rivera testified.

The defense team maintains the 19-year-old blew a .18 in a breathalyzer test and the officer was checking her pockets for drugs during the April 2011 stop.

Rivera is also one of six women to file civil charges against the City of San Diego. She’s suing the city for $500,000 according to documents obtained by NBC San Diego.

Still to testify in this trial is the prosecution’s final alleged victim "Jane Doe.” In what's already been a very intriguing trial - her testimony is expected to be some of the salacious yet.

Anthony Arevalos has pleaded not guilty. He faces 19 years in prison if convicted on all of the criminal charges. 

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