Two more sex-related charges filed against sheriff's deputy

Imperial Valley

Two more sex-related charges filed against sheriff's deputy

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EL CENTRO, CA (13 On Your Side) - Two new sex charges have been filed against Imperial County Sheriff's Deputy Stephen Lankford after two more women testified he tried to force them to perform oral sex on him while on duty.

Deputies first arrested Lankford in a separate case in April, after evidence matched similar accusations made by a 29-year-old El Centro woman.  

During today's hearing, both women testified deputy Stephen Lankford threatened to arrest them if they didn't have sex with him.  

In court, the first woman - a Seeley resident - testified Lankford entered her home without her permission in November and  confronted her while she was naked.

The woman, who's identity is not being revealed per the judge's order, says Lankford was on duty.

She claims he spotted a broken meth pipe on her table - he then solicited sex in exchange for not arresting her.

The woman claims she did not perform oral sex on him but testified Lankford continued to contact her.

The second woman - an El Centro resident - claims in February, Lankford entered her home, searched her room and found Vicodin.  

The woman testified, Lankford took her inside of his car, placed his arms behind his head, opened his legs and asked her what she would do to him so that he wouldn't arrest her.

This second woman claims she too did not perform oral sex on him.

Deputy District Attorney Marco Nunez says the evidence is stacked against Lankford.   

"I'm not able to comment on how the victims feel or what their testimony was about. All I can say is that we did two separate preliminary hearing examinations today involving two separate victims. The judge found that there was probable cause to hold Mr. Lankford, Deputy Lankford to answer in both cases. So now he's facing multiple felony counts in three separate cases."

Lankford is out of jail after posting bail. However, he remains on paid leave from the Imperial County Sheriff's Office.

Lankford's case will resume in a couple of weeks.