Superior Court Judge Dismisses Lawsuit By Former Officer

A Superior Court Judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by a former Lakewood Police Department officer against the City of Lakewood.

Former LPD Officer Vic Celis filed a lawsuit in 2012 naming the City of Lakewood, Chief Bret Farrar and Assistant Chief Michael Zaro as defendants. Celis was employed by the City of Lakewood for six years. Celis had been investigated for an alcohol-related incident at an Oktoberfest celebration in Leavenworth in 2010. He was placed on administrative leave after the incident.

During the investigative process Celis resigned to avoid potential termination. In his lawsuit Celis claimed that white officers who violated policy were treated more favorably than Latino officers. Celis also claimed that he was passed over for promotion because of his race. The Tacoma News Tribune covered the initial lawsuit filing .

Superior Court Judge Stanley Rumbaugh dismissed the lawsuit by Vic Celis on July 3, 2014. In making his ruling, the Judge stated that during the Leavenworth incident, Mr. Celis was a "disgrace to the uniform." He said Celis obstructed justice, sought and received preferential treatment and he still does not acknowledge using his police officer status. He said Celis engaged in a clear betrayal of the public trust. The Judge stated that there was insufficient evidence to prove the Defendants acted out of racial animus against him.

Celis has 30 days to file an appeal.