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IRVINE : Police Probe Focuses on ‘Code Four Club’

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A police internal-affairs unit on Thursday continued to investigate allegations that some officers formed a club made up of those who had sex with women in the back seats of their patrol cars while on duty.

Officials hope to complete the investigation next week.

Police Chief Charles S. Brobeck said Thursday that investigators have focused on lapel pins for a “Code Four Club.” ( Code Four is a police term meaning an officer is all right.) A preliminary investigation indicated that some officers might have owned such pins seven or eight years ago along with pins from Olympic games, Brobeck said.

But the chief stressed that the existence of the pins does not necessarily mean that any sort of Code Four Club existed in Irvine. He noted that such police-related pins often are exchanged at training sessions and at law-enforcement trade shows and are collected by many officers.

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Brobeck said the first that he or his police commanders heard of the Code Four Club was on Tuesday, after allegations were leveled by an attorney representing four current and former female police employees who are suing the city for sexual harassment and discrimination.

On Wednesday, the attorney as well as two of the women displayed a Code Four Club pin as proof that such a club existed for at least eight years. The women also claimed that officers openly boasted about their sexual exploits and that the pins were awarded to an officer once he had sex with a woman in his patrol car.

But neither Pamela Fuehrer nor Abbe Taylor--both of whom are on medical leave as officers of the department--would provide many details about the allegations.

Despite this, Brobeck said he takes the charges seriously and vowed a “complete and detailed” investigation that he hopes will dispel conflicting rumors that have surrounded the latest allegations.

“We want to be upfront and very truthful with the community,” he said.

Both Brobeck and Detective Henry Boggs, president of the Irvine Police Assn., said officers are angry and frustrated over the allegations.

“My peers are upset because they are not allowed because of department policy to speak out against these allegations,” Boggs said. “We don’t like being dragged through the mud.”


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