Officer rearrested in theft of cash at California cannabis facility

A file image taken July 31, 2019 shows cannabis plants growing. (Brian Cassella/Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)

A Los Angeles police officer has been arrested for a second time for allegedly stealing cash from the backpack of an employee at a cannabis grow facility, prosecutors and police said.

Officer Luis Mota was initially charged with misdemeanor theft after his first arrest in January. Following his arrest on Thursday, the 46-year-old was charged with felony burglary, the Los Angeles Times reported.

An employee at the facility alerted an LAPD supervisor that money was missing from her backpack after police conducted enforcement at the pot grow, the newspaper said. Surveillance video pointed to Mota as the alleged thief, prosecutors said.

Officials didn’t say what new information or evidence prompted the added charge.

Mota’s attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment Thursday. Mota could not be reached for comment.

Mota’s bail was set at $50,000, but he was released from jail under rules aimed at reducing the spread of the coronavirus in jails, according to the Times..

Mota is scheduled to be arraigned in January. If convicted, he faces up to three years in jail.