CHP officer arrested on Nevada County charges |

CHP officer arrested on Nevada County charges

A California Highway Patrol officer was arrested Wednesday on perjury and forgery charges after an investigation centered in Nevada County.

Russ Somervill, 39, of Lincoln, was booked into Wayne Brown Correctional Facility on suspicion of perjury and submission of a forged instrument of evidence to court, and was released on $10,000 bail.

Somervill was an 11-year employee of the Highway Patrol, assigned to the Valley Division office, said spokeswoman Julie Powell.

In January 2013, he was honored for his efforts in combating vehicle theft with his 10th consecutive 10851 award, which recognizes officers who have been proactive in recovering stolen vehicles and apprehending the suspects.

To qualify for the award, an office must either make six "rolling stolen" (suspect-occupied) arrests, recover 12 vehicles (including three "rolling stolens") or help identify a theft ring, arresting at least two suspects and recovering at least 10 vehicles.

"He no longer works for the CHP," Powell said Friday.

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Powell said Somervill's arrest came after a long investigation and that the alleged crime took place in Nevada County. She would not provide any details of the criminal allegations, however.

"I want to assure the public that we take allegations of misconduct very seriously," Powell said.

Powell added there is an ongoing investigation. No criminal complaint has yet been filed by the Nevada County District Attorney's office.

To contact City Editor Liz Kellar, email or call 530-477-4229.

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