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

October 5, 2018

Law Enforcement News

Chicago PD Works To Address Alarming Suicide Rate Among Officers
After being rocked by three officer suicides in less than three months, the Chicago Police Department is taking steps to improve mental health outreach and provide more mental health resources. The department's officer suicide rate is 60 percent higher than other departments, according to a 2017 Department of Justice report. To lower that rate, the department has started peer support groups and has a priest on call to provide spiritual guidance. It also plans to hire more clinical therapists, WGN9 reported. 

Man Found Stabbed To Death Near Apartment Complex In East Hollywood
A man was found stabbed to death Wednesday morning near an apartment complex in East Hollywood, the Los Angeles Police Department reported. Neighbors called police around 7:35 a.m. after seeing blood in the area of Heliotrope Drive, just north of Beverly Boulevard and near the border with Koreatown, according to LAPD Officer Greg Kraft. Sky5 aerial images showed the man's body positioned near a couch, located close to the sidewalk. It's unclear if the deadly stabbing happened Tuesday night, or early Wednesday morning. Investigators were trying to identify the man, and determine whether he was a transient or a resident of the neighborhood.

2 Homeless People Assaulted With Acid At Mission Hills Park, LAPD Says
Los Angeles police say they are investigating after two homeless people were doused with battery acid at a park in Mission Hills early Sunday, causing burns to their bodies. The incident, reported at about 12:10 a.m. Sunday, involved a 42-year-old woman and a 35-year-old man who had been sleeping at Devonwood Park at Devonshire Street and Woodman Avenue, according to LAPD officials. “The male stated he woke up to his female companion screaming in pain and running from where they were sleeping,” LAPD Officer Tony Im said. “He observed burns on her face and arms and then realized he was also experiencing burns to his skin to a lesser degree.”
Los Angeles Daily News

Lyft Driver Accused In Van Nuys Rape; More Possible Victims Sought
A rideshare driver is behind bars, accused of raping a woman who hired him to take her home and police think there could be more victims out there. The 37-year-old ride share driver was arrested for allegedly raping a woman he drove home from a Van Nuys pub. The woman summoned a Lyft driver to take her home about 10 p.m. Tuesday, according to the Los Angeles Police Department. Detectives identified the suspect as Octavio Alvarez Gomez. Police eventually tracked Gomez down and arrested him while he was driving for Lyft. He was booked on suspicion of kidnapping with the intent to commit a sexual assault, rape, sexual penetration with a foreign object and felony sexual battery. He also works for Uber and investigators worry there could be more victims out there.

LAPD And Alto US Announce New Tool to Battle Organized Retail Crime
City Attorney Mike Feuer, the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), and Alto US have announced they are teaming up to implement the retail risk management solution Alto Alliance, a technology platform with comprehensive analytics that ties together retailers' data with industry-wide resources to efficiently bridge the gap between retail, law enforcement, and the judicial system to prosecute repeat offenders and organized retail crime gangs. "This new technology tool will greatly enhance our petty theft prosecutions by collecting and organizing the evidence needed for successful prosecutions, allowing us to focus our resources on repeat offenders while maximizing rehabilitation opportunities for first offenders," said Mary Clare Molidor, Chief of the Los Angeles City Attorney's Criminal Branch.
Police Magazine

Smash-and-Grab Burglars Hit Melrose Streetwear Stores
The search is on for a team of smash-and-grab burglars who made off with thousands of dollars in streetwear and other merchandise from two West Hollywood stores. The two burglaries happened just a day apart on Melrose Avenue. Surveillance video shows the burglars using a series of tools - first bolt cutters, then a motorized saw and finally a sledgehammer - to break open the front door of one store. Cellphone video from a witness at another store shows them carrying out merchandise and fleeing in a hurry in two getaway cars. The two stores they hit were BAPE and Cool Kicks LA.

Driver Who Crashed Into Whisky A Go Go Crowd Arrested On Suspicion Of DUI
A man who crashed into a crowd of people at the popular Whisky a Go Go club on Sunset Boulevard was arrested on suspicion of driving while intoxicated, authorities said Wednesday. Los Angeles County sheriff's deputies responded to the scene of the crash about 11:30 p.m. Tuesday on Sunset Boulevard and Clark Street. Four pedestrians were hit and suffered minor injuries, a sheriff's department spokeswoman said. At least one person was taken to a hospital but was released by Wednesday morning, she said. Video of the crash showed a black car with a shattered windshield on the sidewalk by the nightclub. A Lyft sticker can be seen through the cracks.
Los Angeles Times

Van Nuys Man Charged In Fentanyl Death
A Van Nuys man was ordered held without bond Thursday on federal charges alleging he sold the powerful synthetic opioid fentanyl to a 23-year-old victim, who then suffered a fatal overdose and crashed his car in a restaurant parking lot on Ventura Boulevard. James Dorion Rodriguez, 27, was arrested Wednesday at a motel in Mission Hills in connection with the first indictment brought under a new state-federal task force created to investigate fatal opioid overdoses, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office. At a hearing in Los Angeles federal court, Rodriguez was ordered held pending trial.

Rap Mogul Suge Knight Gets 28 Years In Compton Manslaughter Case
Former rap mogul Marion “Suge” Knight, who pleaded no contest last month to voluntary manslaughter for running over a man with a pickup truck in the parking lot of a Compton hamburger stand, was sentenced Thursday to 28 years in state prison. Knight, 53, entered the plea Sept. 20 in Los Angeles County Superior Court, days before his long-awaited trial was set to begin in connection with the Jan. 29, 2015, killing of Terry Carter, 55, following an argument near a promotional shoot for the movie “Straight Outta Compton.”
Los Angeles Daily News

Man's Conviction Upheld For South L.A. Woman's Killing
A state appeals court panel Thursday upheld a transient's conviction for fatally stabbing a South Los Angeles woman who had allowed him to stay at her apartment for about six weeks. The three-justice panel from California's 2nd District Court of Appeal found that the evidence of Laevin Meikel Weatherspoon's guilt — “including his DNA on the murder weapon and his own admission on the witness stand” that he stabbed Wanda Threadgill to death was “overwhelming.”

Statewide Pot Raids Target Illegal Grows In 39 Counties — 52 People Arrested
Law enforcement officials raided illegal marijuana grow sites around the state, arresting 52 people in a months-long operation aimed at stemming California's still-booming black market for pot, officials announced on Thursday. The 12-week takedown was part of state Attorney General Xavier Becerra's Campaign Against Marijuana Planting, or CAMP, which goes after pot growers who continue to flout regulations following the legalization of marijuana in California last year. So far this year, state officials have eradicated 614,267 plants in more than 254 illegal grow sites around California, according to the attorney general's office. They also seized 110 weapons.
San Francisco Chronicle

Public Safety News

Flea-Borne Typhus Outbreak Hits Downtown LA; Rats, Feral Cats And Opossums Can Spread Disease Downtown
Los Angeles is experiencing an outbreak of flea-borne typhus, the county Department of Public Health announced Thursday. “Although typhus normally occurs throughout L.A. County, we are observing several cases in the downtown Los Angeles area,” Los Angeles County Health Officer Muntu Davis said. “We encourage pet owners to practice safe flea control and encourage all cities in the county to ensure maintenance of their trash clean-up and rodent control activities.” Flea-borne typhus is a disease that infected fleas can spread to humans. It can cause high fever, chills, headache and rashes in people and can be treated with antibiotics.
Los Angeles Daily News

Fire Burns Abandoned Church West Of Downtown Los Angeles
Firefighters worked for hours Thursday to knock down a fire that burned an abandoned church west of downtown Los Angeles. More than 130 firefighters responded to the fire in the 700 block of West Washington Boulevard in the University Park area near the 10 and 110 freeway interchange. The Los Angeles Fire Department said the building served as a mortuary when it was built in 1924 before it became home to several worship groups. The fire was contained to the 19,800-square-foot building, which was red-tagged after inspectors determined it was unsafe to occupy.

Local Government News

Homelessness Frames The Discussion As Local Leaders Outline The State Of Business In San Fernando Valley
As it has at many public discussions in recent months, the topic of the homeless – and where to put places to house them – dominated the discussion as seven local leaders outlined the state of the San Fernando Valley on Thursday. Los Angeles City Councilmembers Paul Krekorian, Bob Blumenfield, David Ryu, Paul Koretz, Mitch Englander, Nury Martinez and Monica Rodriguez grappled with homelessness and other topics that shape the area's business climate at the annual State of the Valley Luncheon hosted by the Greater San Fernando Valley Chamber of Commerce.
Los Angeles Daily News

Hollywood Sign Aerial Tram: Los Angeles City Council Approves Exploring Idea
The full Los Angeles City Council has approved the idea of exploring an aerial tram to the Hollywood sign. The City Council's unanimous approval Wednesday allows city officials to study the feasibility of various safety, traffic and park access improvements around the iconic sign. "For far too long, our City has gone without a comprehensive plan to address safety, access and mobility around the Hollywood Sign and Griffith Park," Councilmember David Ryu said in a press release.

LA Kings, LA Councilman Blumenfield Ink Partnership To Build Reseda Rinks
Los Angeles City Councilman Bob Blumenfield and Luc Robitaille, president of the Los Angeles Kings, signed a memorandum of understanding alongside other officials at the Toyota Sports Center on Thursday affirming their commitment to build and operate a long-discussed ice rink in Reseda. The facility, estimated to cost $26 million, will include an outdoor roller hockey rink, NHL-size ice rink for hockey and figure skating, locker room and 127-spot parking lot on Sherman Way between Lindley and Etiwanda avenues.
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: