This week I was informed by two different Sacramento residents who were driving to work that they were pulled over in two separate incidents. Both claimed it was by Sacramento Police Department officers asking where they were going, except one of the drivers was pulled over in Sacramento County, jurisdiction of the Sacramento County Sheriff. Sometimes Sheriff’s deputies are mistaken for Sacramento Police Department.
Both people said they were driving to work in industries deemed “essential.”
Show me your papers
The first driver, a woman, said she tried to offer her California Drivers License to the police officer, but said the the gloved officer didn’t want to touch it or look at it, and only asked to see a business card to prove she was on her way to work to an “essential” job.
The second driver, a man, reported that he was pulled over twice this week, and said he was asked the same thing – that the police officer didn’t want his drivers license, but only wanted a business card to prove he was on his way to work.
I sent this information to the Chief of Police at the Sacramento Police Department, and to the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department. I asked:
- Can you confirm if this is the directive provided to officers?
- Who issued the directive?
- If this is the directive, did it come from you as Chief, or the Mayor and City Council?
and to the Sheriff’s Department I sent a similar email and asked:
- Can you confirm if this is the directive provided to deputies?
- Who issued the directive?
- If this is the directive, why? and Did it come from Sheriff Scott Jones or the County Supervisors?
- Was this one of your deputies?
No SacPD Officer should be making a traffic stop solely for the purpose of checking where someone is going or to see if they are an essential worker. That doesn’t mean traffic stops won’t happen for regular violations (ie stop sign, red light, speeding). SacPD officers are not the only ones that are peace officers present in Sacramento so I would be very interested in having someone speak to these individuals who gave you this information. I would like to research these incidents to confirm who was doing this activity. Our officers directive at this time specifically prohibits stopping someone for the sole purpose of seeing where they are going. If you have information about the time/location or badge number/name of the officers I would be interested in looking into these claims.
Daniel Hahn, Chief
Sacramento Police Department
The Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department replied:
This is not a directive to any of our deputies, from anyone. The goal of the Sheriff’s Office is be educational at this time. We will not be asking anyone for proof of any kind, nor will any vehicle stops be predicated on finding out where someone is going.
If you have information related to a deputy’s name or badge number please send it to us so we may look into this further.
-Community Relations Bureau-
I replied back thanking both departments for their responses, and said if I find out a name/badge number, I will forward to them. Neither driver acquired a name or badge number of the officers.