A Gila County detention officer is facing felony charges for reportedly driving to work with drugs in his vehicle.
Saban Mata was on his way to work on Oct. 28 when detectives with the Arizona Department of Public Safety and the Gila County Drug, Gang and Violent Crimes Task Force pulled him over on a traffic stop, according to a press release.
“During the stop it was discovered officer Mata was driving on a suspended Arizona driver’s license. Further investigation by detectives showed Officer Mata was in possession of a narcotic drug,” according to the release.
Mata is on administrative leave and as a result of the investigation, the GCSO forwarded charges of possession and use of a narcotic drug, possession of drug paraphernalia and promoting prison contraband to the Gila County Attorney’s Office.
Mata graduated from the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office detention academy in August 2018 after completing a 12-week program. He was recognized as the overall top recruit of the class, combining physical fitness and academic achievements.
Sheriff Adam Shepherd thanked the Arizona Department of Public Safety for their cooperating efforts.