A Modesto Junior College instructor and former reserve Ripon police officer pleaded not guilty Tuesday to charges he molested two friends of his teenage daughter.
The district attorney’s office last week charged Francisco “Frank” Jose Drummond, 42, with felony charges of lewd and lascivious acts with the two girls, ages 13 and 15.
A third count charges Drummond with oral copulation by use of force or injury with a third girl between June 1990 and June 1991. No other information about that victim was available.
The charges came more than three months after Drummond was arrested during a staff meeting Aug. 28 at MJC’s East Campus, where he taught criminal justice courses, police said.
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to the Merced Sun-Star
Assistant District Attorney Carol Shipley said the lag time was not “out of the ordinary.”
“Some cases need a little more investigation before we file on them,” Shipley said. “We want to make sure we have the evidence if we choose to go forward on it.”
Drummond’s attorney, Kirk McAllister, said the addition of the third charge that dates back almost two decades shows prosecutors are stretching to make their case.
“Anytime they try to drag up something that old it shows you that they’re dealing out of weakness and not strength,” McAllister said.
“The charges are baseless, and we’re going to be fighting this as vigorously as any case in court,” he said.
Drummond resigned from his job as a reserve Ripon police officer just days after police showed up at his Modesto home to investigate allegations of lewd acts upon the teenage girls.
He previously worked as a police officer in Modesto and Patterson.
Police said Drummond sexually molested two girls at his home in the 900 block of Wellesley Avenue, near the MJC campus.
Investigators believe the girls were molested separately, on Aug. 9 and 20.
Drummond is on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of his criminal case, said Nick Stavrianoudakis, a spokesman for Yosemite Community College District.
Drummond has taught administration of justice courses since 2000, and most of the courses were online. His on-campus courses were taught at the east campus on College Avenue.
In 2003, Drummond was honored as a distinguished faculty member at MJC. His courses at the college involved teaching students about conducting criminal investigations, which included finding evidence, interviewing victims and witnesses, and writing reports.
On Aug. 26, Drummond submitted his resignation from the Ripon Police Department, where he had worked as a reserve officer since May 2004.
Drummond worked as a full-time patrol officer for Modesto police from February 1994 to August 2000, according to a department spokesman.
In April 1991, Drummond was honored as officer of the year for his work in Patterson by the Modesto Civitan Club.
Drummond was released from jail on $75,000 bail. His next court hearing is Jan. 15.
Bee staff writer Merrill Balassone can be reached at 578-2337.