Ex-Sanger cop faces new assault charges

Former Sanger police officer receives additional sexual assault charges after another victim was identified

By Derek Fleming
Published June 13, 2024  • 
9:30 am
(Kenny Goodman)
(Kenny Goodman)

SANGER – New developments have emerged in the case against former Sanger police officer J. Deshawn Torrence, who is facing charges for a series of sexual assault allegations.

Torrence was indicted in July 2022 on several charges alleging that he sexually assaulted several women while on duty. A Fresno Grand Jury returned a superseding indictment that added another victim. It is alleged that the additional victim was locked in Torrence’s patrol vehicle, driven to a remote location and sexually assaulted. 

Shortly after he was arrested in 2022, Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims gave a press conference calling on any additional victims to step forward. 

“He needs to be held accountable,” Mims said. “It is a black eye on law enforcement. Nobody wants to hold a police officer accountable more than us. The last thing we want is for someone who behaves like that to be in a law enforcement position.”

Sanger Police Chief Greg Garner added that any instance of police misconduct will be investigated and officers violating the law will be held accountable. He revealed that Torrence was in violation of department rules during the incidents because he did not enter the traffic stop into his computer and he turned off his body-worn camera.  

The charges Torrence faces range from forcing a woman to remove clothing without a legitimate law enforcement purpose to sexual assault. He potentially faces five counts carrying maximum sentences of life in prison for each charge, a charge that carries a maximum of 10 years, and five other charges that each carry one-year sentences. Torrence also faces potential fines in excess of $1 million. All of the charges relate to misconduct while “under the color of the law.”

Prosecutors allege that Torrence committed the acts between Aug. 2017, and June 2021. The announcement of the additional charges was made by Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert for the Eastern District of California and Special Agent in Charge Siddhartha Patel of the FBI Sacramento Field Office.

The Federal Bureau of Investigations, Sacramento and the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office are investigating the case and encourage anyone who has additional information to contact the FBI. 

Torrence is in federal custody as he awaits trial. 

Derek Fleming