SACRAMENTO -- A Sacramento County Sheriff's Deputy was fired for sending explicit messages to a woman he met on an emergency call for assistance, according to internal documents released online by the department.
Patrick Walker, then-40, was identified in more than 200 pages of a Professional Standards Division Investigation, as the former deputy who began messaging and texting with a then-21-year-old woman who was in crisis in July 2022.
That's when, according to internal documents, her friends called 911 to report the woman as at-risk missing, concerned that she may take her own life by overdosing on cocaine and fentanyl. The friend reported that she had access to illicit drugs and was walking at an unknown location.
Walker responded to the call, using his department-issued cell phone to contact the woman via text message and deputies found her. She shared that she ingested illicit pills and was taken to the hospital for treatment.
From there, Walker accompanied the woman to the hospital, where she was placed on a mental hold and released three days later.
Within the same week, the woman told deputies during their internal investigation, she texted Walker's department-issued cell phone because she was, "bored, mentally unwell, and intoxicated, at the time." Within the next week, by August 1st, the woman reported the conversation moved from text messages to Walker's Facebook Messenger account.
Topics of conversation escalated, according to the findings and recommendations outlined in the internal documents, to the woman's sexual history, mental illness, and history of drug abuse. The messages included a photo Walker took of himself in his uniform in the Central Division locker room, according to a Commander's Note of the investigation.
The woman asked Walker if he was married, to which he answered that he was, but messages included in the internal documents show Walker "made it clear he wanted to have sex with her."
From there, the woman told investigators that she refused sex with Walker, but that she had been part of "sugar daddy" situations with men before and believed she could get money from Walker. The two agreed that Walker would send $100 for each nude photo she sent, but "did not recall" sending Walker any photos of herself.
Walker sent the woman an explicit photo of his genitals when he claimed to be off duty and under the influence of alcohol.
What she did send, according to her interview with investigators, was a pornographic video but Walker did not pay and instead, blocked her on Facebook Messenger.
The woman texted Walker on his department-issued cell phone to say she would report him if he did not pay for the video. Ultimately, he paid two payments of $200 totaling $400 to the woman via CashApp. She shared screenshots of the payments and they are included in the internal documents.
Throughout the interactions, the woman told Walker that his actions were inappropriate. When she asked why he proceeded with the messaging he replied he was, "sick in the head."
The woman's stepfather reported the messages to the Sacramento County Sheriff's Office. He believed that Walker was "grooming" the woman and taking advantage of her, concerned that Walker may do this to other vulnerable women.
When confronted with the situation by investigators, Walker said the messages were intended to check on the woman's well-being after the mental health call, but that it was unlike other interactions he said he had with similar circumstances, before.
In interviews with the Sheriff's Office Walker said he "believed he took advantage of the situation for his own sexual gratification."
By October 31, 2022, it was recommended based on the evidence, that Walker be fired.
"It's a very horrible experience, very traumatic experience for them because clearly, the officer who abused her took advantage of her had to be disciplined and removed from service," said Mark Merin, a Sacramento Civil Rights Attorney who represented the woman in litigation.
Merin said the woman is finally receiving the mental health treatment she required a year ago, but it's been complicated by the trauma of this event. He said the settlement between the woman and Sacramento County is not a "quick fix" for the trauma from the sexual abuse.
"The young woman and her family, they were trying to help her. For her to be abused and used by supposed public servants, the police, it really is disheartening," said Merin.
He also expressed concern about the time between the first messages in July 2022 and the deputy's termination at the end of October 2022.
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