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Deputy arrested after being found in a car with a teenage girl

June 28, 2012 |  3:49 pm

A 39-year-old Los Angeles County sheriff's deputy was arrested early Thursday morning after being found inside a parked car with a teenage girl, authorities said.

Police got a call from a grandmother around 2 a.m. complaining that an older man had picked up and drove away with her 15-year-old granddaughter.

During routine patrol, San Fernando police came across the pair inside a car talking.

Police discovered the man was Richard DiGiovanni, a veteran patrol deputy with the Sheriff's Department.

DiGiovanni was arrested on suspicion of contributing to the delinquency of a minor. The girl's grandmother did not know him. Authorities said the nature of the deputy's relationship with the teen is still being investigated.

"It's not right for anybody to do this," said interim San Fernando Police Chief Gil Carrillo. "I don't care if he's a police officer."

Sheriff's spokesman Steve Whitmore said DiGiovanni has been relieved of duty with pay. "The sheriff takes this very seriously," Whitmore said. 

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-- Robert Faturechi

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