A Long Beach police officer charged with sharing images of children being sexually abused has left the department and is set to begin receiving his pension, according to public records.
Anthony Brown, who had been suspended without pay since his arrest on Feb 10, recently put in his paperwork to retire, and on March 31, the Long Beach Civil Service Commission, which oversees employment policies for the city, approved his request.
Brown, 56, is expected to receive a pension of about $7,800 per month—$93,600 annually—through the state-administered CalPERS retirement system, according to Jennifer De Prez, a spokesperson for the city of Long Beach.
Brown worked for the city for almost 27 years and most recently was assigned to patrol Long Beach Airport. He made $116,668 in salary and another $106,983 in overtime in 2019, the most recent year of data available in Transparent California’s database of public employee compensation. When taking benefits and other pay into account, Brown made $294,447 that year, according to the database.
Like other CalPERS retirees, Brown’s pension amount is calculated through a formula based in part on his recent wages and the number of years he was employed.
CalPERS pensions are guaranteed through state law and collective bargaining agreements and can only be revoked under specific circumstances, such as when a retiree is convicted of a felony that is connected to his or her job.
Police and prosecutors have not alleged any direct connection between Brown’s official duties with the LBPD and the accusations he shared pictures and videos of children—some estimated to be as young as 7—being sexually abused on a social media site called MeWe.
Prosecutors charged Brown last month with three felony counts of distribution of child pornography and one felony count of possession of child or youth pornography—each of which carry a penalty of between 16 months and three years in prison.
In addition to the criminal case pending against Brown, the LBPD still has an ongoing internal investigation into him even if any employment penalty levied against him might now be moot.
“The decision to retire is a personal decision by the employee and does not impact the suspension process or the criminal and administrative cases,” LBPD spokesman Brandon Fahey said.
The Long Beach Police Department says it is also looking into why it took more than eight months for detectives to arrest Brown after they identified him as a possible suspect.
Brown has not responded to calls or emails from the Long Beach Post. His first court date is set for June 9. He’s free on $20,000 bail.