Daily Local & Regional NewsWatch
LA Police Protective League


Los Angeles
Police Protective League
the union that represents the
rank and file LAPD officers

  Daily Local & Regional NewsWatch

Daily News Digest
from LA Police Protective League

July 12, 2017

Law Enforcement News

US Soldier Charged With Killing NY Trooper Plotted 1999 School Attack
Court records show that a U.S. Army soldier charged with killing his wife and a New York State Police trooper once plotted to shoot up his Michigan middle school while a teenager, according to a Michigan news outlet. reported that Justin Walters was 15 and a ninth-grader at Macatawa Bay Middle School in Holland, Michigan, when he and a classmate were accused of compiling a "die or dead list" and planning to shoot people then kill themselves. Another classmate tipped off police to the 1999 plot. Walters pleaded guilty in family court to conspiracy to carry a dangerous weapon, according to the news outlet, which cited Grand Rapids Press reports. Now 32, the Zeeland, Michigan, native was charged with murder Monday after New York authorities say he fatally shot his wife, Nichole Walters, and Trooper Joel Davis on Sunday night at the Walters' home in Theresa, near Fort Drum in northern New York. 
Associated Press

Boy, 11, Stabs Mass. Cop
A cop stabbed while breaking up a fight is recovering after police say he was injured Sunday by an 11-year-old boy who lunged at another boy with a knife. Police Capt. Tim Crowley said the incident occurred shortly before 5 p.m. on Read Street when an officer was patrolling and saw a disturbance involving juveniles. The officer got out of his car and prevented a boy from stabbing another, cops said. “Shortly after he got out of the car, this 11-year-old came out of the house holding a knife over his head going after one of the kids on the street. He was charging at another kid, so the officer intercepted the boy and ended up getting cut twice on the arm, once on the finger and once on the outside of his arm with the knife,” Crowley said. “It's very rare that you see a child this young involved in this kind of violent incident. ... God knows what would have happened if the officer wasn't there.”
Boston Herald

Woman Arrested For False Report Sparking Amber Alert
Los Angeles police have arrested a woman accused of falsely reporting she was carjacked and that a 16-year-old was kidnapped, which prompted an Amber Alert. Police announced Tuesday that Charlene Gaston was arrested Friday on suspicion of filing a false police report. Authorities say Gaston told police her car had been taken at gunpoint in South Los Angeles last Thursday and gave police the name of a woman who she said stole the vehicle.  Gaston also claimed a 16-year-old boy was in the backseat when the car was taken, prompting police to issue an Amber Alert.  Police say there was never a carjacking or kidnapping. They say Gaston had loaned her car to the other woman, who refused to return it.  Police announced Friday evening that the woman who had borrowed the car had been located, along with the vehicle, in San Bernardino.
FOX 11

After Van Nuys Shooting, Shell Casings Remain, Suspect And Victim Do Not
Both the suspect and intended victim fled after a shooting Sunday night in Van Nuys, with nothing but numerous bullet casings left in their wake. The shooting was reported around 11:30 p.m. at Sepulveda Boulevard and Saticoy Street, said Officer Irma Mota of the Los Angeles Police Department's Media Relations Section. Mota said the suspect and victim both fled the location. “Officers arrived, and there was nobody at the scene,” Mota said. According to a report from the scene, the LAPD Van Nuys Division blocked Saticoy Street east of Sepulveda because of the “numerous” shell casings on the ground.
Los Angeles Daily News

Missing San Pedro 12-Year-Old Reunited With Family
The family of a 12-year-old has been reunited with the girl, who went missing from San Pedro July 10. According to police, Analisa Escobar was last seen on the 700 block of 17th Street when she went to retrieve an item from her family's vehicle. She never came back. According to the LAPD, Escobar had never been reported missing before, and it was considered very unusual for her to disappear. Investigators did not believe that Escobar's disappearance was related to foul play.

Neighbors Remember Man Killed In San Fernando Shooting As Helpful And Friendly
Joseph Loya made an impression on the people in his San Fernando neighborhood. He was helpful, had served in the military and was devoted to his parents, they said. “He was a good person,” Andy Guadiana, 25, who knew Loya for about a year, said Tuesday as he stood near two messages spray painted on the street that said “RIP Joseph” and “RIP Joseph Big Chizo,” at the intersection of Fox and Hewitt streets in San Fernando. “He's always helping everybody out around here ... like with groceries or he'll wash cars. He was doing it for the fun of it I guess,” Guadiana said. Loya, 35, was shot and killed around 1:40 a.m. on July 5. Los Angeles police say he was standing in the road in the 14000 block of Fox Street when two cars pulled in diagonally to prevent him from escaping. Someone then got out of one of the cars and shot him several times before the vehicles sped away. Police described one vehicle as a black or dark-colored sedan.
Los Angeles Daily News

Legislation Making It Harder To Punish Police Officers Accused Of Lying Isn't Happening This Year
A bill that would have made it harder to punish California police officers accused of lying is done for the year. Assemblyman Miguel Santiago (D-Los Angeles) pulled his Assembly Bill 1298 from Tuesday morning's Senate Public Safety Committee agenda and will no longer pursue it this year, his office said. The legislation would have required police departments that wanted to discipline officers for lying to have unequivocal proof that an officer had lied. Currently, departments must show that it's more likely than not that an officer has lied before punishing them. Santiago and the Los Angeles Police Protective League, the bill's principal supporter, argued that determing that an officer has lied is tantamount to ending their career, so a higher burden of proof should be used. But police chiefs, sheriffs and civil liberties organizations contended it was already too difficult to punish officers. 
Los Angeles Times

List Of Problem L.A. County Sheriff's Deputies Can't Be Handed Over To Prosecutors, Appeals Court Rules
A list compiled by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department naming deputies who've lied, stolen, falsified reports and committed other types of “moral” misconduct cannot be handed over to prosecutors, a Los Angeles appeals court ruled on Tuesday. The decision by the state's 2nd District Court of Appeal is the latest turn in the fight over a secret list of 300 problematic deputies whose history of misconduct could damage their credibility if they are ever called to testify in criminal cases. The Assn. for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs, the union that represents rank-and-file deputies, sued the department last fall over the department's attempt to disclose the names to prosecutors, saying doing so would violate peace officer confidentiality laws and draw unfair scrutiny of deputies whose mistakes might have happened long ago. A Superior Court judge agreed in January that providing the list would violate state law, but said the department could turn over the names of problem deputies when there's a pending case in which that officer might testify.

Rape Kit Backlog Bill Could Die Despite Overwhelming Support
Sexual assault survivors gathered at the state capitol Tuesday to promote three pending bills in the  legislature that aim to reduce rape kit backlog in the state. Activists want to raise awareness about the  issue  and help survivors receive the justice they deserve. The process of collecting DNA for a rape kit is second only to the assault itself. The kits include envelopes for underwear, fingernail clippings and fluids. “So that's the speculum goes in the vagina and opens up,” explained Dr. Angela Vickers, the Medical Director of the sexual assault program for Sacramento County. “This is the anuscope. This comes out. Then I can look inside to see if there's any  injuries  and collect swabs.” They are only part of what an assault survivor provides for a rape kit. There's also the  interview . “It is an intimate, invasive interview talking about what happened to the patient, talking about their past medical history which includes sexual history and drug history,” said Vickers.
CBS San Francisco

Ending Bail Worries California Judges
Though it failed on the Assembly floor last month, an effort to overhaul California's bail system is still moving this session after an identical measure passed the state Senate. To succeed the second time around, supporters will have to address concerns recently raised by judges, who are among the groups that will be most directly affected by the changes proposed in Senate Bill 10. Proponents argue that the current framework of setting bail by crime and then releasing defendants who can post that rate discriminates against the poor, trapping many Californians in custody long before they have been convicted of anything. SB 10 would largely eliminate the use of money bail by having courts rely instead on assessments of an offender's flight risk and danger to public safety. If deemed necessary, bail would be set based on their ability to pay. It faces heavy opposition from commercial bail bond agents, law enforcement officers and prosecutors, who argue that monetary stakes are the most effective way to ensure someone shows up in court after being released. 
Sacramento Bee

NYC Mayor At Officer's Funeral: 'We Must Help Our Police'
The public needs to step up to protect police at a time when they're under attack, New York's mayor and police commissioner said Tuesday as they eulogized an officer ambushed and killed in a parked police vehicle. "We've watched with horror these attacks on our police here in New York City and all around our country. It sickens us, and we know they cannot be tolerated, and we know they must end," Mayor Bill de Blasio said at Officer Miosotis Familia's funeral. "But in fact," he added, "we must end it. It's not a one-way street, my friends. We must help our police in every way, just as we ask them to help us in our moment of need. ... They need us to be their eyes and ears. They need our solidarity and support." Taking aim at protesters and the media for what he sees as too much criticism of officers, Police Commissioner James O'Neill said Familia's death "should remind everybody that the civility of our city rests on a knife's edge." 
Associated Press

Public Safety News

Off-Duty Firefighter Honored For 'Extraordinary Heroism' In 405 Plane Crash Rescue
Fire Captain John Meffert is a real-life hero and Tuesday he was honored for his quick thinking in saving two people from a plane that crashed in a fireball on the 405 Freeway June 30. Meffert was the first to arrive on the scene of the fiery plane crash. According to witness accounts, he put his vehicle in reverse on the freeway and headed back toward the crash, running toward the flames to render aid to the people inside. "While driving on the crowded 405 Freeway towards the John Wayne Airport he noticed an aircraft was flying unusually low. It was only seconds later that he realized the aircraft was coming directly toward him," said Janice Hahn of the Los Angeles County Board Of Supervisors. "While most of us would have been too shaken to move Captain Meffert's natural instinct was to get out of his vehicle and head towards the plane now engulfed in fire. But Captain Meffert demonstrated extraordinary heroism by putting his own life on the line to save the lives of two strangers in need," said Hahn.

Local Government News

To Fight Wildfires, LA County May Buy New Combat Helicopters For $29 Million
Los Angeles County leaders on Tuesday are poised to approve a $29.4 million agreement for a pair of custom-modified military helicopters to help bulk up the region's aerial fire-fighting fleet. If the plan is approved, the county would lease the two Sikorsky S70i Black Hawks for 10 years, then have the option to buy them. Fire officials have said the helicopters can easily siphon 1,000 gallons of water and swoop into hard-to-reach areas to help battle raging wildfires. “These new aircraft will provide upgraded operational capabilities to meet current and anticipated future mission requirements,” the Los Angeles County Fire Department said in a staff report. For more than a decade, the department operated a fleet of nine “multi-mission helicopters,” including three Sikorsky S70a Firehawks and six Bell 412 helicopters. 
Los Angeles Daily News

2024 Olympics News

Olympics Are Returning To L.A. And Paris — But When?
The Olympic Games are coming back to Los Angeles. The only question now is, will Southern California host its third Olympics in 2024 or 2028? The International Olympic Committee on Tuesday unanimously approved a plan to award both the 2024 and 2028 Olympic and Paralympic Games this year, a move that guarantees Los Angeles and Paris will join London as the only cities to host three Summer Games. “Los Angeles is a living legacy of this Olympic movement,” Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said. “In 1932 we were a games changer. In 1984 we were a games changer. During the Great Depression, during the Cold War, we've always answered the Olympic movement's call, and this is a similarly intense and important moment for the Olympic movement.” The IOC vote in Lausanne, Switzerland, is not just a triumph for Los Angeles, host of transformative games in 1932 and 1984, and Paris, site of the 1900 and 1924 Games.
Los Angeles Daily News


About the LAPPL Formed in 1923, the Los Angeles Police Protective League (LAPPL) represents the more than 9,900 dedicated and professional sworn members of the Los Angeles Police Department. The LAPPL serves to advance the interests of LAPD officers through legislative and legal advocacy, political action and education. The LAPPL can be found on the Web at: