Change of Venue Denied for Former Odessa Police Officer

Change of Venue Denied for Former Odessa Police Officer

The Odessa Police Officer accused of sexually assaulting and groping women during traffic stops, is headed to trial. Salvador Becerra's defense team tried to change the venue, the request was denied.

Becerra's defense team was looking to hold the trial anywhere but Ector County. This morning, Judge James Rush denied the request. The trial will stay in Odessa.

Becerra was arrested for the first time in March of 2014, two years after being hired by OPD in February of 2012.

Initially Becerra was charged with violating the civil rights of a person in custody and improper sexual activity with a person in custody.

The charges came after a woman accused Becerra of groping her during a traffic stop.

Becerra was arrested and bonded out of jail.

Not long after another alleged victim came forward.

Becerra was re-arrested after a third woman went to police with the same complaint.

OPD's investigation revealed dash cam video captured three similar incidents with three different women during traffic stops.

The audio worked completely fine until Becerra asked women to sit in the back of his patrol car.

According to the affidavit all three women described similar incidents with Becerra asking them what the size of their breast were followed by him placing his hand inside their shirt.

Becerra was then charged with improper sexual conduct in May with someone in custody and sexual assault.

His trial then got pushed back to October of 2014.

In one incident, the affidavit says Becerra spotted an open beer in the woman's car.

After searching her vehicle, Becerra allegedly told her he would have to search her room.

The victim said yes and according to the documents, Becerra cornered the woman inside the room claiming he needed to search her.

Becerra allegedly demanded oral sex from the woman.

She told police she feared she'd be arrested if she didn't comply.

He was fired from OPD after the charges were revealed.

Becerra's defense team requested a change of venue after they said one local station had covered his arrest more than 80 times adding they were afraid jurors might be biased.

Jury selection begins tomorrow at 9 a.m. in Ector County.