An officer with the Bakersfield Police Department has been arrested after investigating a hit and run crash in January of 2022.
A spokesperson for BPD decline to comment.
The full release can be seen below:
On February 17th, 2022, Bakersfield Police Department officers arrested Bakersfield Police Officer Nicholas Bell for a charge of vandalism. The arrest was a result of an internally generated investigation.
On January 17th, 2022, Officer Bell responded to investigate a hit and run traffic collision in the 2300 block of M Street. The suspect vehicle had been abandoned in the roadway and the driver had fled.
During a search of the suspect vehicle, Officer Bell located a cellular telephone and he is alleged to have repeatedly thrown the telephone on the ground, damaging it while expressing frustration that the suspect had fled. This act was witnessed by other Police Department employees who reported the incident to supervisors. The investigation subsequently identified the hit and run suspect, who has no connection to the officer.
Bell was placed on administrative leave while an internal and criminal investigation was initiated. The product of the criminal investigation was submitted to the Kern County District Attorney’s Office requesting a charge of vandalism.
On today’s date (2/17/22), a warrant was issued and Bell was arrested for vandalism. Bell was issued an arrest citation as is standard procedure for this criminal charge.
The Bakersfield Police Department holds its employees to the highest standards of conduct. We support the employees who immediately reported the misconduct. While rare, incidents of officer misconduct are immediately and thoroughly investigated.