Question of Consent : Sex Charge Against Simi Policeman to Be Dropped

July 15, 1987 |GABE FUENTES | Times Staff Writer

The Ventura County district attorney's office plans to drop its case against a former Simi Valley police officer accused of sexually molesting a 16-year-old girl Explorer Scout, an official said Tuesday.

Timothy D. Campbell, 32, was charged in April with two felony molestation counts--statutory rape with a foreign object and sexual battery--stemming from an alleged liaison with the girl in December, 1985. He subsequently was fired.

However, the first charge was dismissed last month, when prosecutors realized that the law upon which the charge was based did not take effect until 1987--13 months after the alleged incident.

Prosecutors will seek to dismiss the other charge, sexual battery, in Ventura County Superior Court on Monday, said Deputy Dist. Atty. Charles W. Campbell Jr. That charge requires that the crime be committed against the will of the victim, and prosecutors do not believe they can prove that the officer forced himself on the Scout, he said.

State of Mind

"Every time she expressed a desire not to do something, he didn't do it," he said. "When you look at what he did do, she didn't resist or say, 'Don't do it.' It would be very difficult to prove that he didn't believe that she reasonably consented."

The case stemmed from the Scout's statements earlier this year that the officer penetrated her genital area with his finger in December, 1985, Charles Campbell said.

Under the current law, such an act is considered a felony, even if the victim consents, the prosecutor said. But that was not the case at the time of the alleged offense.

"If that crime had existed then," Charles Campbell said, "we'd still be in business."

Timothy Campbell had pleaded innocent to the charges and "maintains that he never did anything improper," said his lawyer, William J. Hadden.

Officer Relieved

The former officer "is just glad it's over, and relieved," said Hadden. An administrative appeal of his dismissal is pending, he said.

Campbell was the first of two officers to be charged with sexual misconduct involving the same Scout. Last month, Detective Allen Walter, 32, who investigated sex crimes and child abuse, was charged with numerous felony and misdemeanor counts alleging that he had sexual relations with her and showed her X-rated videotapes. Walter, who has pleaded innocent, was fired earlier this month.

Two other officers remain the subjects of an internal investigation into possibly improper acts with the same girl, the Police Department has said.