A Spokane police officer, accused of helping his daughter after she admittedly assaulted a woman, pleaded guilty Monday morning to rendering criminal assistance and evidence tampering.
The accusations against Officer John Arredondo stemmed from an incident involving his daughter, 32-year-old Ashley B. Arredondo, who on May 17, 2017, reportedly called her on-duty father and told him she and two others had assaulted and kidnapped a woman. Officer Arredondo apparently met them at his northwest Spokane home and proceeded to drive the victim to the hospital in his patrol car.
Despite other members of the Spokane Police Department looking for the suspects at the time, investigators at the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office said Arredondo, who was on patrol on the opposite side of town, intervened and failed to alert his supervisors or arrest his daughter and her boyfriend before taking the victim to get medical treatment.
In the ensuing investigation, detectives also alleged Arredondo deleted text messages between himself and family members that “directly correspond to the investigation and crimes referenced.”
As part of his plea agreement, which was entered the day his trial was scheduled to begin, Prosecutor Larry Haskell said Arredondo’s original felony charges of first-degree rendering criminal assistance were downgraded to a single second-degree charge – a gross misdemeanor. He also pleaded guilty to gross misdemeanor evidence tampering.
Superior Court Judge Maryann Moreno did not order the officer to serve any jail time, Haskell said. Additionally, since the crimes were not a felony, he can still possess a firearm. Arredondo’s attorney, Chris Bugbee, declined to comment on the plea deal.
Police officials said in a statement Monday evening: “With today’s court determination, the city will follow standard protocol by restoring Arredondo’s employment and immediately placing him to a paid administrative leave status. He will remain on paid administrative leave while SPD’s Internal Affairs (IA) unit completes an internal investigation into his actions.”
Ashley Arredondo pleaded guilty last June to second-degree assault with a deadly weapon. Her accomplices, 45-year-old Sherard Henderson and 34-year-old Jamar Dickerson, her boyfriend at the time, also pleaded guilty last year to assault charges.
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