LAPD chief spokesman Josh Rubenstein told PEOPLE the accusations are "absolutely troubling"

By Robyn Merrett
December 13, 2019 10:24 PM
Credit: ROBYN BECK/Getty Images

A Los Angeles Police Department officer has been charged after his body camera allegedly caught him fondling a dead woman’s breasts.

On Thursday, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced in a statement that David Rojas had been arrested and charged with one felony count of having sexual contact with human remains without authority.

The horrifying incident allegedly unfolded on Oct. 20 when Rojas, 27, and his partner responded to a call regarding a dead woman in a residential unit.

The two officers gained entry to the residence and both observed that the woman was deceased. The woman had reportedly overdosed, according to CBS Los Angeles.

While alone with the woman, Rojas allegedly touched the woman’s breasts.

“They both went out of the room and then the individual went back in on his own,” a source familiar with the incident told PEOPLE.

At the time of the incident, Rojas allegedly turned off his body camera, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Although the camera was turned off during the alleged occurrence, it was picked up by an automatic buffer, which automatically saves all footage from two minutes before the device is turned off, according to the Times.

The Times reported that the alleged incident came to light during a random departmental audit of the body-worn cameras.

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After the footage was viewed, Rojas was put on administrative leave.

“There was an accusation of that, and when we learned of it we initiated the administrative investigation and then assigned him home pending the outcome of that investigation,” LAPD chief spokesman Josh Rubenstein told PEOPLE earlier this month.

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Rubenstein said the accusations are “absolutely troubling if it is true.”

Following Rojas’ arrest, Police Chief Michael Moore spoke out to CBS Los Angeles, saying, “This incident is extremely disturbing and does not represent the values of the Los Angeles Police Department.”

Rojas bail has been set at $20,000, according to the news release. If convicted, Rojas faces up to three years in state prison.

An attorney for Rojas could not immediately be found by PEOPLE.