A Rio Vista police officer who was fired last year for dishonesty and making a false arrest was awarded her job back on Tuesday.
The Rio Vista City Council decided to downgrade Officer Natalie Rafferty's termination to a suspension for her involvement in a 2018 incident. The move, though, is largely symbolic because the city disbanded its Police Department late last year. Rafferty will, however, receive back pay.
The reduced discipline is the latest development in the first complete set of officer misconduct cases revealed under a California police transparency law enacted last year.
Rafferty was fired in March 2019 for her actions in the arrest of Katheryn Jenks on Sept. 30, 2018. Jenks had made repeated 911 calls in previous weeks, but each time officers responded, they hadn't found any emergency.
When she again called 911, Rafferty and her partner arrived at Jenks' home and arrested her for making those calls. As the officers forcibly took the 56-year-old into custody, Rafferty’s police dog jumped from the back of the patrol car and mauled Jenks’ arm. Jenks was booked into jail for harassing 911 and felony resisting arrest.