Palm Springs police chief David Dominguez is the focus of a formal complaint sent to the city regarding his role in the 2009 undercover gay sex sting operation.
A gay slur was used by an officer during that sting and it was caught on tape.
The complaint alleges the chief is partly to blame for that slur being used.
On the night he was on-scene to observe the operation, the complaint alleges that Dominguez used derogatory comments about the suspects involved in the sting.
The complaint claims those comments may have created an environment that led to an officer using a gay slur.
But both the city attorney and city manager said Monday that its important to note that the complaint was filed by Gregory Petersen — an attorney representing at least one of the many officers involved in the sex sting.
David Ready, the city manager of Palm Springs, said none of Petersen’s clients requested that he file the complaint.
“This was a complaint by the lawyer himself,” said Ready.
Dominguez has repeatedly admitted to being an observer on-site one night during the operation.
But that he was only there for an hour and that he wasn’t present when the slur was used.
But News Channel 3 mentioned to Ready that the complaint alleges Dominguez was out there for about 4 hours.
“That’s why its important to have the review do its thing, take its course, then we’ll be able to draw some conclusions there,” said Ready.
Dominguez has been asked by the city not to comment on these latest allegations.
The complaint was sent to Ready on Sept. 17.
It alleges that Dominguez was in the vehicle when a police officer used a gay slur.
Petersen claims the language Dominguez was using that night may have prompted an officer to use the slur.
But Ready said this complaint will not spark a separate review into the Warm Sands case.
“The chief has done significant outreach to the LGBT community and diversity training within the department,” said Ready. “Those are very important steps going forward.”
Petersen also represents several officers who belong to the police union, which is currently in contract negotiations with the city.
The police union has recently criticized the city for reducing police personnel and that the city is not as safe as it once was.
City attorney Doug Holland said many of the issues mentioned in the complaint had nothing to do with the Warm Sands case at all.
News Channel 3 asked Ready if he thought that the union is just trying to stir something up because the city’s in contract negotiations with it.
Ready said, “No. I think they’re two completely separate issues.”
Petersen didn’t return News Channel 3’s phone calls for this report.
Ready said the final interviews for the city attorney’s review into the Warm Sands case are being conducted and that the review should be complete soon.