Two lieutenants join growing Menifee Police Department ranks

Lt. Denise Keith has joined the Menifee Police Department. Valley News/ Courtesy photo

Two new lieutenants who recently joined the new Menifee Police department will be introduced at the March 4 City Council meeting.

The Lt. Denise Keith and Lt. Heriberto Gutierrez have assumed their command roles and have already become active members of the growing police department and are participating in the training of other line officers needed for the municipal police department that will take over citywide enforcement from the contracted Riverside County Sheriff, July 1.

“Lt. Keith and Lt. Gutierrez bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the department and we’ve already seen that pay dividends,” police Chief Pat Walsh said. “Whether it is through their expertise in designing our property and evidence facility or in assisting us in setting up our ongoing training program, these two professionals bring so much value to the department and to the community.”

Lt. Heriberto Gutierrez has joined the Menifee Police Department. Valley News/ Courtesy photo

Keith began her law enforcement career in Texas in 2005 and brings over 14 years’ experience to the Menifee Police Department, including a year and half with the Denton County Sheriff’s Department and over 12 years with the Addison Police Department. She was promoted to lieutenant in 2015 and supervised both the Patrol and Criminal Investigation Divisions.

Before that, she served as a sergeant for four years, spending time supervising patrol shifts, criminal investigations and deployment.

Keith earned her bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from the University of North Texas. She also graduated from the Institute for Law Enforcement Administration – School of Executive Leadership and the Institute for Law Enforcement Administration – School of Police Supervision.

Gutierrez began his career in law enforcement at the age of 14 when he joined the Police Explorer program with the South Gate Police Department. In 2000 he graduated from the Rio Hondo Police Academy as a South Gate police officer. During his career, he served as a patrol officer, gang officer, field training officer, SWAT officer and narcotics detective.

In 2013, Gutierrez earned both his bachelor’s degree in criminal justice management and a promotion to patrol sergeant. After his promotion, he supervised various specialized units, including the department’s Crime Impact Team, SWAT team and the Field Training Program. As a supervisor for the Field Training Program, Gutierrez took a lead role in creating an Active Shooter Response Program for officers and civilian employees alike, as well as implemented a paperless documentation and management system for the program.

“We are excited to welcome these two decorated and dedicated officers to our community,” Walsh said. “I encourage members of the community to get to know our officers, stop and talk with them and let them know that the citizens of Menifee are just as excited to welcome them as we are.”

For more information on the Menifee Police Department, including positions that are currently open for recruitment, visit

Tony Ault may be emailed at