Crime

Former EPPD officer gets 18 months in prison; state drops sexual assault charge

Lujan plea

EL PASO, Texas - The former El Paso police officer accused of sexually assaulting three victims and visually recording them while on-duty has been sentenced to 18 months in prison for the invasive visual recording charge.

"This is an extremely sad and embarrassing day for a lot of people - the complaintants, family, yourself and your children," presiding Judge William Moody said.

The state dropped the sexual assault charges filed against 37-year-old Brian Michael Lujan. ABC-7 has learned Lujan pleaded guilty to the invasive visual recording charge. 

"The conduct of Brian Lujan while wearing the uniform of an El Paso police officer was horrible," prosecuting attorney Bill Anderson said. "Today, a measure of justice met out in the courtroom of Judge Moody."

Defense attorney Joe Spencer called the plea deal a "very sad situation." 

"No one is a winner in this type of case, Brian accepted responsibility and that is what he did," Spencer said. "He put this behind him and he is looking to move forward."

An ABC-7 camera was rolling when the sentence came down, but Lujan's relatives tried blocking the courtroom windows as they said their goodbyes. ABC-7 was told Lujan's wife and children where inside the courtroom during the guilty plea. The prosecutor said the victims of the crimes were not present because they did not want to see Lujan and declined to give an impact statement.

Lujan started serving his sentence Thursday. ABC-7 learned he received credit for 40 days already served while awaiting trial.

BACKGROUND

At the time of Lujan's arrest in February 2017, ABC-7 learned Lujan, a four-year veteran with the El Paso Police Department, had previously been disciplined for texting a woman while on the job.

Police records state that on February 2015, Lujan was given a seven-hour suspension for obtaining a woman's personal information and texting her while on duty, according to documents from the Internal Affairs Department.

Lujan allegedly obtained the woman's information while handling a call for service on Aug. 31, 2014. An investigation into the incident began about a month later. 

On February 24, 2015, documents state Lujan settled and agreed to a seven-hour suspension for "Violation of Rule #6 (Inattention to Duty) and Viol of Rule #9."  The suspension is one of two recorded on Lujan's history card.

Lujan had previously been reprimanded in 2014 while serving with the EPPD, this time for a violation of safety practices.

According to the Internal Affairs documents, Lujan was given a written reprimand for crashing his police unit into a light pole.

Documents state this happened Nov. 27, 2013. Lujan was in his unit when he looked away from the roadway and veered his unit from the road, crashing into the light pole in the center median on the 11300 block of Montwood in East El Paso, damaging city property.

Documents state Lujan's failure to keep a proper lookout and maintain control were the causes of the preventable crash.

On February 27, 2014, Lujan was given a written reprimand for "Viol of Safety Practices - Preventable Accident (Marked)."


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