SALINAS (CBS SF) — A former acting King City police chief was sentenced Tuesday for his role in a car-towing scheme that targeted Mexican nationals, Monterey County prosecutors said.
Bruce Miller, 50, was sentenced to 90 days in county jail and three years of probation, prosecutors said.READ MORE: San Jose Arts Committee Votes to Remove Controversial Statue of Thomas Fallon
In July, Miller had pleaded no contest to misdemeanors of conspiracy to commit an injurious act to the public and giving false statements to the state Department of Motor Vehicles, according to the district attorney’s office.
As part of his sentence imposed by Monterey County Superior Court Judge Julie Culver, Miller cannot work as a police officer and must provide true testimony in future court proceedings while on probation, prosecutors said.
Under Miller’s leadership, officers stopped drivers who were mostly Hispanic and forced them to give up their vehicles if they were unable to pay towing fees, prosecutors said.
A majority of the vehicles were sent to Miller’s Towing, a company owned by Miller’s brother, Brian, despite the Police Department’s rotational towing policy, prosecutors said. Records showed that of the hundreds of cars towed to Miller’s Towing, almost all of them involved car owners holding Mexican license identifications.READ MORE: Multiple Earthquakes Rattle Sierra Nevada Near Truckee Thursday Night
The impounded cars were either sold through an auction or given to King City police Officer Bobby Carrillo from Brian Miller, according to prosecutors.
Bruce Miller took a free 1999 Chevrolet car from Carrillo and let him continue the illegal towing scheme, prosecutors said.
Bruce Miller claimed he bought the vehicle for $500 when he registered it with the DMV, according to prosecutors.
Bruce Miller, his brother, Carrillo and four other King City police officers were arrested in February 2014 after an investigation by the Monterey County District Attorney’s Office into alleged corruption within the department, prosecutors said.MORE NEWS: Pandemic Weight Problems, Eating Disorders Affect Children