Jacob Finerty, 28, of Hesperia, California, entered an open plea to four counts of fraud on Friday.
Finerty claimed to have injured his back in an off-duty accident while
he was employed with the Santa Barbara Police Department. He also
claimed that he could not perform his usual and customary employment
duties as a police officer due to his back injury.
Beecher of the Santa Barbara Police Department investigated Finerty's
claims. She discovered that during the same time Finerty claimed he
couldn't do his job, he was seen on multiple occasions lifting heavy
weights, engaging in strength competitions and competing in MAS
Wrestling events. Many of those activities were captured on video and
photographs and posted on social media.
Sgt. Beecher sent her findings to Deputy District Attorney Gary Gemberling who filed the four felony counts against Finerty.
Finerty entered the open plea to all charges and there was no plea agreement.
Clifford Anderson sentenced Finerty to 120 days in jail, placed him on
five years probation and ordered him to payback $115,669.86 to the City
of Santa Barbara.
Santa Barbara County District Attorney Joyce
Dudley stated, "The fraud committed by the defendant was paid for by the
taxpayers of the City of Santa Barbara, the very same people the
defendant was hired to protect. His criminal actions caused a
significant breach of the public's trust and resulted in his status
changing from Santa Barbara Police Officer to a Felon."