Oakland narcotics officer axed for drugs

The Associated Press
Monday October 14, 2002

OAKLAND — The Police Department has fired a veteran narcotics officer for alleged misconduct stemming from a 2001 case involving several hundred dollars worth of cocaine. 

The department on Friday fired John Gutierrez after a probe concluded he falsified a report about finding cocaine during a search and was untruthful about the matter in court testimony. 

The same internal affairs investigation cleared Gutierrez of allegations in other cases, including taking money and tampering with evidence, the Oakland Tribune reported. 

Gutierrez’s attorney, Rocky Lucia, said he plans to appeal the dismissal, which he called “an excessive and insupportable overreaction.” 

While Gutierrez has been on administrative leave, the department has dismissed several cases he investigated. Last October, just before his troubles began, the department named Gutierrez officer of the year. 

Police officials also transferred four other officers in an attempt to reform the narcotics unit.