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Thursday, Jul 16 2009 12:08 PM

Bakersfield police officer charged with sexual battery

A Bakersfield police officer was arrested Thursday for reportedly assaulting a woman while he was on duty.

Officer Jeffrey Luff is charged with misdemeanor battery and misdemeanor sexual battery.

On June 28, an unidentified woman told police she had met Luff the night before when he responded to a loud party call.

Police Chief Bill Rector said Luff had been dispatched to a loud party call. He ended up knowing some of the people at that party.

Some time after shutting the party down, Luff, who was still on duty, went to another location to meet up with the people he knew at the earlier party.

“He wasn’t dispatched there, he did that on his own,” Rector said.  

He then drove two females back to the location of the first party. One of the women told police that while giving her a hug, Luff grabbed her buttocks and genital area.

Based on the information the woman provided, both a criminal and an internal investigation was held.

Upon concluding the criminal investigation, it was submitted to the Kern County District Attorney’s Office for a criminal complaint. A warrant was issued Thursday for Luff’s arrest.

The internal affairs investigation has also concluded, Rector said, but a decision on what action the police department may take hasn’t yet been determined.

Luff, 26, had been on administrative leave during the investigations. He has worked for the Bakersfield Police Department for 2 1/2 years.

“This is extremely disappointing,” Rector said, who also described the situation as “embarrassing” for the department.

“We have much higher expectations of our officers.”

The officer’s father, Jim Luff, said his son had told him he had taken the women home as they were intoxicated. The woman who spoke with police allegedly asked Luff for a hug, “and next thing there’s an allegation of inappropriate touching,” Jim Luff said.


Luff’s father said his son served in the Air Force for four years, and had his nose broken while training to become a police officer.


“I can’t imagine going through that much torture to have him throw it away on some drunk girl,” he said.


“He wanted to serve our city,” Jim Luff said. “He’s probably regretting that today.”

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