UC Police Officers File Lawsuit Against UC Regents and Other Officers
By edhat staff
Two UC Police Officers at UCSB have filed a lawsuit against five fellow officers and UC Regents for alleged mistreatment, according to The Daily Nexus.
The two officers, married couple Michael and Tiffany Little, allege they were retaliated against by their superiors and co-workers after reporting violations and suspected illegal activity conducted by other officers. They are suing for violation of the California Whistleblower Protection Act and violation of the California Labor Code, according to court documents obtained by the Nexus.
In one complaint, Officer Tiffany Little informed her supervisor that a subordinate officer was "spending an inexplicable amount of time in the UCSB Freshman Residence Halls while on duty" and was suspicious of his behavior for allegedly turning off his radio and refusing to respond to calls for service for multiple hours at a time.
Other claims include officers driving "code three," with lights and sirens, through traffic because they were late to a breakfast event in Los Angeles, dismissing a vehicle accident that caused damage to employer's property due to an alleged intimate relationship between other officers, suspicious of using UCPD's gas card for non-job-related purchases, hitting a parked car and fleeing the scene, and time card fraud.
Officer Michael Little claims he was demoted from a detective position to a Corporal position and was removed from leading training exercises in retaliation. Mrs. Little also claims she was passed up for a promotion by officers with five years less experience than her.
Around December 2017, Mrs. Little received a subpoena from an attorney in relation to a criminal case involving a former UCSB-PD officer. The former officer was being investigated for "sexual assault, providing alcohol to students, and other inappropriate conduct." After complying with the lawyer and investigation, Mrs. Little told her boss that she was truthful to which he said she talked too much.
Mr. and Mrs. Little are seeking an undisclosed and unlimited amount for damages to exceed $25,000.
The Daily Nexus reports the university is “aware of the allegations and is undertaking a thorough review,” according to UC Santa Barbara spokesperson Andrea Estrada.
The full complaint can be viewed here.