Utah deputy charged with child molestation, accused by victims in Arizona
(KUTV) -Gerald Salcedo, a Utah County Sheriff's Deputy, was charged with three counts of sexual conduct with a minor after two people in Mesa, Arizona accused him of molesting them in 1985 when they were kids.
"If we had known the things alleged to have happened, he wouldn't have been hired," said Sgt. Spencer Cannon of the Utah County Sheriff's Office.
Salcedo worked for the Sheriff's Office since 1994.
Before that, around 1989, he was hired as an officer at Provo Police where he worked for about 15 years.
In response to a request Tuesday night for details about Salcedo's employment, Sgt. Nisha King said she could not offer details because it was too late to access his records but offered to provide more information the following day.
Salcedo's employment at both department overlapped for a few years. He started as a part-time deputy at the Sheriff's Office mostly doing security-type work - likely in court.
Cannon said Salcedo would have had to pass a lengthy and rigorous background check to be hired by the sheriff's office.
The accusations of molestation surfaced in 1995 - after he's been hired by both police agencies.
When investigators in Mesa first began looking into the accusations, the Utah County Sheriff's Office did become aware of that investigation.
"He denied that anything had happened and we didn't have enough evidence to say otherwise," said Cannon noting that the investigators in Arizona closed the case due to a lack of evidence.
Then, in 2017, a witness came forward and the case was re-opened. Charges were filed after that.
Cannon said there were no complaints about Salcedo while he was a deputy and he seemed friendly and well-liked.
"In my view when these kind of charges come to light, if they turnout to be true, then he never was a good cop," he said.
Cannon hopes the public continues to trust the Sheriff's Office.
"We want the public to know that we do everything we can so the people we hire have high quality character," he said.
Gerald Salcedo was arrested by police in Orem after a warrant was issued and remains in jail while authorities in Arizona try to get him back to that state.