Suspended Fresno police officer arrested, accused of violating court order

Jesse Ruelas
Jesse Ruelas Fresno Police Department

A Fresno police officer who was placed on administrative leave in July after he was charged with misdemeanor child abuse was arrested Wednesday night after state Department of Justice agents found that he had firearms in his home – a violation of a criminal protective order.

Jesse Ruelas was booked into Fresno County Jail and firearms were seized from his Clovis home, according to Fresno police spokesman Joe Gomez. He was no longer in the jail Thursday morning.

Reulas, with the force since 1996, was charged in July in Fresno County Superior Court with corporal injury to a child. A police report said Ruelas struck a girl at least three times in her head with the heel of his right palm, causing her to suffer a mild concussion. The report said the incident happened May 21 while Ruelas was with the victim and two other children, ages 8 and 9, in his pickup.

The state agents went to the home of Ruelas to search for firearms that had not been surrendered pursuant to the protective order served Oct. 14. California law precludes possession of guns by those under such an order.

Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer issued a statement Thursday about the Ruelas case, saying that his department-issued gun was taken from him when he was placed on leave July 31.