Officer Fined for Hitting Redondo House With Truck

TIMES STAFF WRITER

A Torrance police officer has been placed on probation and ordered to pay a $612 fine after he pleaded no contest in South Bay Municipal Court to misdemeanor hit-and-run driving for slamming his truck into a Redondo Beach house.

Officer Roland Sabara, 34, still faces possible disciplinary action by his own department when an internal affairs investigation is completed.

Sgt. Ron Traber, spokesman for the Torrance Police Department, said state law prevents officials from revealing what action the department takes.

Municipal Court Judge Sandra Thompson ordered Sabara last Tuesday to pay the fine and serve two years of unsupervised probation after Redondo Beach City Prosecutor John Slawson submitted a recommendation urging leniency.

"This is a routine hit-and-run with a person who has a perfect DMV history and who (pleaded) at the earliest opportunity, without any motions, trial, etc.," Slawson wrote in the report.

Sabara, who faced as much as six months in Los Angeles County Jail and a $1,000 fine, represented himself in court. He could not be reached Wednesday for comment.

Sabara was accused of driving his blue 1989 Chevrolet Blazer through a wooden fence and into the corner of a house at 615 Diamond St. about 2 a.m. on Aug. 21.

A witness told police that the driver of the truck backed up and drove off without getting out to look at the damage.

Investigating officers found a half-mile trail of fluids that leaked from the truck, but the trail dried up before leading them to the vehicle.

The owner of the house, who told police that he slept through the incident, found a vanity license plate--PRFLVSN--in the debris. It belongs to Sabara's truck.

Sabara went to the Redondo Beach Police Department's public counter about 10 hours after the accident to report his involvement. He said he had fallen asleep at the wheel, and reported that he was not under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of the accident.

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