A Pasadena Police Department officer received a “no terms and conditions” dismissal of his case late last year after he reportedly sprinted off into the desert, away from his car and California Highway Patrol officers, during a DUI stop on San Francisquito Canyon Road, according to court documents and law enforcement officials.
The deal, according to the court documents, to have a pretrial diversion with no form of punishment hinged on the PPD officer, Sgt. Michael Gligorijevic, “not getting into subsequent trouble.”
Gligorijevic had, according to law enforcement personnel familiar with the matter, parked in his car on San Francisquito Canyon Road — near Copper Hill Drive — due to some kind of car trouble on July 11, 2020, at 9:24 p.m. when he was approached by California Highway Patrol officers responding to a disabled vehicle call.
Also inside the car, according to sources and court documents provided to The Signal, were Gligorijevic’s teenage daughter and an unnamed PPD lieutenant.
“When driving southbound on San Francisquito Canyon Road, I encountered a black Jeep Wrangler (subject vehicle) on the right shoulder, north of Power Plant No. 1, south of San Francisquito Canyon Bridge at approximately (9:19 p.m.),” read the report filed by the responding CHP officer. “I did not recall seeing this Jeep stopped at this location approximately 25 minutes earlier when I was northbound in search of the silver Mercedes.”
“There were three people standing outside of the Jeep and the subject vehicle’s lights were on,” the initial report added.
Although much of the original documents obtained through a Public Records Act request were redacted, sources confirmed that Gligorijevic was identified as the driver of the vehicle and had been noticeably drinking.
After a short conversation with the CHP officer, and with a gun on the dashboard of his vehicle and his lieutenant and daughter still in the backseat, Gligorijevic is believed to have taken off into the nearby desert landscape, according to law enforcement personnel.
A video posted online last month seems to support what the report filed by CHP states, allegedly showing Gligorijevic speaking with CHP officers before taking off into the desert.
Law enforcement officers confirmed to The Signal that Gligorigevic was later ordered to appear in court some months later, and was charged with one misdemeanor count of resisting arrest.
“On Dec. 30, 2020, the court placed the defendant on diversion for six months,” said Ricardo Santiago, a spokesman for the L.A. County District Attorney’s Office. “On June 30, 2021, (Gligorijevic) completed his diversion period successfully, and the case was dismissed.”
In speaking with The Signal on Tuesday, Lt. Bill Grisafe of the Pasadena Police Department declined to comment to about any punitive measures taken against Gligorijevic, stating that the PPD does not comment on personnel matters.
Transparent California, a website that tracks pay for government employees in the state, showed Gligorijevic having received total pay and benefits of $302,212.44 from the Pasadena Police Department in 2020, the most recent year available.