Police Officer Eric Kent
On June 4th, Officer Kent was patrolling the area of El Camino Real and Orange Street when he saw a woman riding a bike westbound on the south sidewalk. As he drove past her, Officer Kent observed she had earphones in both ears which is a violation of California Vehicle Code 27400. He made a u-turn, activated his emergency lights, and conducted a bicycle stop. The woman identified herself to Officer Kent, and he asked her if she was on probation or had ever been arrested and she said no.
Officer Kent continued questioning her, and she eventually admitted to having been arrested once before for drug possession. Officer Kent requested a records check on her which revealed she was on probation with search and seizure. He asked her if she had anything illegal in her purse and she said no. He asked if he could search her purse and she hesitated to answer. Seconds later, she admitted there was a gun in it. Officer Kent took her purse and placed it on the ground behind him.
Officer Smith arrived to help, and Officer Kent searched her and her purse. Inside the purse was a .38 caliber pistol with 10 rounds of ammunition. He also located a small amount of methamphetamine and syringes loaded with methamphetamine. She claimed the gun belonged to her live-in boyfriend, and that she did not have plans to use it. She was arrested for being a felon with a gun, possession of ammunition, and drug possession. Her Probation Officer was notified, and he placed a probation hold on her.
Officer Kent continued to gather information on the gun. A records check showed the registered owner deceased as of 1983. The gun will most likely never be claimed and will be destroyed, meaning there is one less gun on the streets of Tustin thanks to the efforts of Officer Kent. A “simple” bike stop uncovered a felon on probation who was committing multiple felonies.
For his dedication, diligence, and his excellent work on this case, Officer Eric Kent been selected as the recipient of the Chamber of Commerce Officer of the Month award for the month of July 2015. Congratulations Officer Kent!