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Armed robbery, kidnap charges for IE cop?

October 15, 2009 12:24:43 AM PDT
A Riverside police officer has been thrown off the force one day after being arrested. Investigators say the officer tried to rob a store in Moreno Valley, then held people inside at gunpoint.Officers responding to a robbery at an AutoZone store on Sunnymead Boulevard found off-duty Riverside city police officer David Reeves Jr. being detained at about 9 p.m.

Wednesday, David Reeves Jr. was a sworn Riverside police officer. But Thursday, he's a kidnap-for-ransom suspect, in jail on a $250,000 bail, and his career with the Riverside Police Department is apparently over.

Reeves started work for the police department in 2001 as a cadet, and was sworn in as an officer in 2002.

The gun used in the attempted robbery was not Reeves' service weapon.

"It's always very disturbing when a law enforcement officer goes off path and commits a crime, but to assure the public that regardless of what they do for a living is going to be facing the same criminal charges and is currently in our jail," said Sgt. Dennis Gutierrez, Riverside County Sheriff's Dept.

The Riverside County Sheriff's Department is handling the investigation.

It all happened about 9 p.m. Wednesday at an Autozone store in Moreno Valley.

Police allege Reeves tried to rob the place, and because he used a gun to hold people against their will -- and because he was demanding money -- the charge he's facing is kidnap for ransom.

But he never got away, because people inside the store were somehow able to hold him down until police arrived.

While some residents are shocked at the alleged crimes committed by a peace officer, others say we shouldn't rush to judgment.

"You've got to assume that he's right and innocent until proven otherwise," said Riverside resident Hardy Lewis. "With any individual you have to do that."

"I think some of them are corrupt, and I don't care how far up the food chain you are, as far as governor, police, president, I think we should all pay for what we did, and I think he should pay for what he did," said Riverside resident Keon Walker.

"To me they're no better or no worse than a regular citizen," said Riverside resident Mary Wilson. "If you commit a crime, you get the same punishment that everybody else does."

It's up to the district attorney what Reeves will actually be charged with. If he is charged with kidnap for ransom and convicted, the sentence could mean life behind bars.

Anyone with information related to this case is urged to call the Moreno Valley Police Department at (951) 486-6700.

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