• Polk County deputy allegedly asked to touch women he arrested


    POLK COUNTY, Fla. - A Polk County deputy is accused of asking to touch and expose women who were under arrest in exchange for special treatment.

    According to authorities, Deputy Julio Garcia was arrested and charged with unlawful compensation or reward for official behavior and falsifying an official record or document by a public servant.

    The investigation started in November 2013 when a woman came forward alleging that Garcia asked her to undress and allow him to touch her body while she was under arrest in exchange for preferential treatment.

    After investigating, sheriff's office officials said they found a second woman who also claimed to have been propositioned by Garcia while under arrest.

    "We will not tolerate this kind of outrageous conduct by someone sworn to uphold the law and protect our citizens. When we learned of the first allegation, we immediately initiated an investigation, sought other possible victims," Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said.

    In addition to the women's claims, Garcia allegedly left his assigned patrol area multiple times while under surveillance by the sheriff's office. Officials said he didn't get permission or document that he had left his area.

    The 26-year-old deputy was suspended from the Polk County Sheriff's Office on Friday and was arrested Wednesday. Officials said they gave Garcia the option to resign and he refused. His employment is now pending termination procedures.

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