AUBURN -- A CHP officer was arrested Monday afternoon by the Placer County Sheriff's Office for transmission of child pornography.
The 54-year-old man, Patrick Francis Cooney Jr., was taken into custody after an investigation found that he was "willingly transmitting child pornography that depicts sexual acts involving persons under 18."
Authorities searched his home and collected all electronic devices.
Cooney has worked for the CHP for 26 years. He first worked in Ventura, then North Sacramento and now Auburn where he served until Monday as a road traffic officer.
Cooney was booked into the Placer County Jail in Auburn; his bail is set at $50,000.
CHP released the following statement after Cooney's arrest:
“CHP is aware of the arrest of one of its officers by the Placer County Sheriff Department for alleged behavior that occurred while the employee was off duty. I want to assure the public that we take any allegation of misconduct by our employees, whether on or off duty, very seriously. The CHP is fully cooperating with the investigating agencies. In addition, the CHP is conducting its own investigation into the allegations. While the investigation is being conducted, the employee has been placed on administrative leave and his peace officer powers have been revoked.
The CHP is a proud and professional organization. I want to emphasize to the public that the alleged conduct of this employee does not reflect the values, hard work, dedication and professionalism of the CHP and its more than 11,000 employees, who proudly work each day to provide the best in Safety, Service, and Security to the people of California.”