The Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office arrested Matthew Sepulveda on July 9 for allegedly sexually assaulting a suspect in custody, according to jail records.
Sepulveda is a cop with the Progreso Police Department in Progreso, Texas. It’s illegal for law enforcement officers to engage in any sexual activity with a person in custody.
Progreso police Chief Alberto Rodriguez said he fired Sepulveda last week.
The case stems from an accusation by a man claiming Sepulveda sexually assaulted him when he was in custody on June 28 after his arrest during a traffic stop Valley Central News reports.
The Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the incident with assistance from the FBI. Investigators executed a search warrant at the Progreso Police Department on July 2.
The FBI confirmed that The Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office is the lead agency investigating Sepulveda’s alleged crime.
Sepulveda stands charged with one count of sexual assault and one count of violating the civil rights of a person in custody. The latter charge lists the additional qualifier of “sexual,” jail records show.
Sepulveda was previously employed at the Hidalgo County Jail, earning a promotion to sergeant, according to a sheriff’s Facebook post from Nov. 15, 2017. He resigned from the Sheriff’s Office amid an internal investigation.
But this isn’t Sepulveda’s first time in trouble because Texas public records show that:
“On September 12, 2018, the Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office initiated an internal investigation on Detention Sergeant Matthew Sepulveda based on a report of officer misconduct, specifically that Sgt. Sepulveda used his department issued camera to record a supervisory counseling without the consent of all parties involved. The internal investigation produced a preponderance of evidence to prove an incident of officer misconduct occurred. However, prior to Sgt. Sepulveda being served with the Internal Investigation notification, he resigned.”