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

January 10, 2020
Law Enforcement News

Man Convicted In Death Of L.A. Deputy Who Died Dodging Stove On 91 Fwy May Soon Go Free
A man who was driving a truckload of stolen appliances when a stove tumbled from the vehicle, causing a crash that killed a Los Angeles County sheriff's deputy, may be released from prison after an appellate court reduced his conviction. Cole Wilkins, 43, of Long Beach had just stolen a shipment of appliances from a home under construction in Riverside County and was driving on the 91 Freeway in Orange County about 5 a.m. on July 7, 2006, when an unsecured stove fell onto the roadway. David Piquette, a 10-year veteran of the Sheriff's Department, was driving to work from his Corona home and swerved to avoid hitting the appliance. He collided with a cement truck, which landed on top of his car and crushed him. Wilkins is currently serving a sentence of 16 years to life in Avenal State Prison after being convicted of second-degree murder in 2017. But a three-judge panel of the 4th District Court of Appeal in Santa Ana ruled Tuesday that jurors did not have enough evidence to prove Wilkins' actions contained the “implied malice” needed to qualify for a second-degree murder conviction. Instead, the panel changed his conviction to involuntary manslaughter, which carries a maximum term of four years.

Gunman sentenced to life in murder of border agent; case exposed 'Fast and Furious'
A man convicted of shooting a U.S. Border Patrol agent nine years ago in a case that exposed a botched federal gun operation known as “Fast and Furious” was sentenced Wednesday to life in prison. U.S. District Judge David C. Bury sentenced Heraclio Osorio-Arellanes to the mandatory life sentence after hearing tearful statements from the sisters of Brian Terry, the agent who was fatally shot while on a mission in Arizona on Dec. 14, 2010.
NBC News

Post Gascon: Why are SF Residents Paying for Private Security?

San Francisco residents pay some of the highest taxes in the country, but more than a dozen neighborhoods still levy mandatory fees on property owners to finance services the city is failing to provide.
Fox News

Reward Offered In Road Rage Attack That Severely Injured Man In Van Nuys
A $15,000 reward is being offered for information leading to the perpetrators of a violent New Year's Day road rage attack in Van Nuys that left a man severely injured. The incident was caught on camera. A man was stopped at a red light at the intersection of Victory Boulevard and Woodman Avenue around 9:30 p.m. Jan. 1 when the suspects pulled up behind him in a black Jeep, according to the Los Angeles Police Department. The man behind the wheel of the Jeep had been driving erratically, police said. Both drivers pulled to the curb and the occupants exited their vehicles, at which point the Jeep's driver punched the victim in the head, knocking him unconscious and causing him to fall to the ground. The victim has still not regained consciousness, according to police. 
FOX 11

Public Help Sought To Find 12-Year-Old Girl Last Seen Tuesday
Authorities Thursday sought public help to find a 12-year-old girl last seen about noon Tuesday. Letzy Cortez of Los Angeles was last seen leaving her home near the 12200 block of Osborne Place in the Pacoima area. She was wearing a black jacket, white shirt and blue pants, the Los Angeles Police Department said. Cortez is possibly loitering in the Koreatown area of Los Angeles with an unknown boyfriend, police reported. She is described as Hispanic, 4 feet, 9 inches tall and 120 pounds, with black hair, brown eyes and a nose stud, according to the police. Investigators urged anyone knowing her whereabouts to call the Foothill Area division at 818-834-3115, or to report during non-business hours, direct calls to 1-877-LAPD-24-7. Those wishing to report anonymously were asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.

Man Accused Of Pushing Pedestrian Into Street Found Incompetent
A transient who was charged with attacking three people in downtown Los Angeles, including a man he pushed in front of a moving truck, has been found mentally incompetent to stand trial, a spokesman for the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office said Thursday. Criminal proceedings against Garrett Joseph Boldt, 42, had been suspended since last April while a decision was made about his competency. Boldt is accused of pushing a passing pedestrian into the street Dec. 5, 2018, on West Sixth Street near Broadway, where the man was struck by a box truck and suffered serious injuries. The crime was caught on video, police and prosecutors said. The defendant also allegedly took a bracelet that the man had dropped when he was pushed. He was arrested later that afternoon, after he allegedly punched a woman at a bus stop at West First and South Hill streets.

Man's Conviction Upheld For Murder Of Girlfriend's Mom In Van Nuys
A state appeals court panel Thursday upheld a man's conviction for murdering his girlfriend's mother, who had asked him and her daughter to move out of her house in Van Nuys. The three-justice panel from California's 2nd District Court of Appeal rejected Troy Monroe Hill's contention that there were errors in his trial, in which he was found guilty of first-degree murder for the September 2014 killing of Trudy Douglass, 53. Jurors also found true the special-circumstance allegation of murder while lying in wait, along with an allegation that he used an ax handle as a deadly weapon. Hill acknowledged to police that he waited for Douglass to go to sleep before he killed her, according to the appellate court panel's 20-page ruling.

LASD Searching For Pair Who Scammed Elderly Woman Out Of $4K
Sheriff's deputies in Norwalk are searching for two con artists who they said have been scamming elderly shoppers out of thousands of dollars. “It's terrible,” one shopper said. “Sadly there's desperate people out there.” Deputies said an 80-year-old woman was shopping at a Norwalk Target when she was approached by a man and a woman who tricked her into giving them $4,000 cash for a fake gold brick. The scammers convinced the victim that the gold brick was real and offered to sell it to her for half the value. They claimed they couldn't sell it because they were in the country illegally. The woman, believing the pair, then drove to a nearby bank and withdrew the money, deputies said. Once the woman learned she had been scammed, she called the police.

Tennessee Teenager Arrested For Posting Social Media Threat Against Calabasas High School
A teenager from Jackson, Tenn. was arrested Thursday on suspicion of posting a school shooting threat against Calabasas High School on social media. Authorities became aware of the social media post overnight and immediately launched an investigation. Calabasas High School Principal CJ Foss said in an email to parents that the threat was believed to have come from New Orleans with no known connection to Calabasas, and deemed to be not credible. Sheriff's officials say they later identified the post as coming from a 17-year-old in Jackson, Tenn. Madison County sheriff's deputies arrested the teen at about 8:30 a.m. The teenager did not have any weapons. Sheriff's officials say the teen did not appear to have any intention of carrying out the threat. 

Central California Man Accused Of Killing Estranged Girlfriend Found Hiding In Mexican Motel: Officials
A Central Valley man accused of killing his estranged girlfriend and dumping her body in Imperial County was arrested Thursday in Mexico, investigators said. Adel Hussein, 44, was found hiding in a motel in Mexicali, just across the border from Calexico, the Tulare County Sheriff's Office said in a news release. Hussein was being held in Imperial County on suspicion of murder in the death of 36-year-old Brittney Steenbergen, whose body was found on New Year's Day in a rural area of the county. Steenbergen shared four children with Hussein, one of whom called authorities New Year's Eve to report her mother hadn't been seen since Dec. 28 — and Hussein had also disappeared. Though they were estranged, officials said Hussein lived with Steenbergen and the children in the tiny rural community of Plainview, about 50 miles north of Bakersfield.

California And Nevada Officers Fatally Shoot Murder Suspect
California and Nevada law enforcement officers fatally shot a murder suspect during a “high-risk” traffic stop near the state line, authorities said Thursday. The investigation closed northbound Interstate 15 on the California side for hours through Thursday morning, causing a 6-mile backup on the freeway. I-15 is the main route between Southern California and Las Vegas. The man was shot and killed near the Mojave Desert community of Nipton, in San Bernardino County — about 200 miles east of Tehachapi in Kern County, where a 55-year-old woman was killed. The Kern County Sheriff's Department had alerted San Bernardino County deputies on Wednesday afternoon to watch for an “armed and dangerous” man driving a 2017 Nissan in Baker, Calif., officials said in a statement. Angela Monroe, a spokeswoman for the Kern County sheriff, said Thursday the man is believed to be involved in the slaying of the woman in Tehachapi.
Los Angeles Times

Human trafficking increase expected during Super Bowl
To combat an expected rise in sex trafficking during the Super Bowl, law enforcement officials said Thursday that they need hotel workers, ride-hailing service drivers and security personnel to be especially alert. These are the people most likely to encounter the victims and perpetrators of trafficking — and would be able to provide authorities with tips and evidence of the crime taking place, Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody said at the “No Room for Trafficking” conference, held at the Fontainebleau Hotel.

Public Safety News

Body Found In Water-Filled Catch Basin In Wilmington
A body was found Thursday in a water-filled catch basin in the Wilmington area. Firefighters were sent to the 1600 block of North Eubank Avenue about 12:20 p.m., according to the Los Angeles Fire Department. The body was found close to the shore of the water-filled pit, which is about 30 feet deep, the LAFD reported. Information was not immediately available on the gender or identity of the person. Police were sent to the scene to investigate.
FOX 11

What's It Like To Steer The Back End Of A Long Fire Truck? These Guys Know
On a gloomy morning in downtown Los Angeles, the crew at Los Angeles Fire Station 10 meandered about the firehouse, checked the equipment and swapped playful jabs at one another. Then the bell rang out. The loudspeaker blared out orders for a rescue: Someone was on top of a two-story building, possibly threatening to jump. Firefighter Steve Schaller, 39, rushed into his yellow jumpsuit. He hopped into the front driver's seat of Tiller Fire Truck 10. His captain jumped in next to him. A third firefighter joined them in the cab. Sixty feet in the back, firefighter Robert Bobadilla climbed up the side of the truck and into a glass and metal cab the size of a small fridge, alone. He pulled his headset on as the engine in front roared to life. As the truck took off, Bobadilla, 32, was tugged along, steering in conjunction with the firefighter up front driving, the engineer – his partner.
Los Angeles Daily News

Gov. Newsom's Budget Proposal Seeks Funding For More Firefighters, Fire Protection
California Gov. Gavin Newsom wants to hire more state firefighters and make homes safer from devastating wildfires in the budget he will send to state lawmakers on Friday. The 555 additional full-time firefighters would be hired over five years, his office told The Associated Press, augmenting the 4,800 current permanent firefighters by about 12%. The state also hires about 2,400 seasonal firefighters. Wildfire threats prompted power companies to impose debilitating widespread blackouts last year in an attempt to prevent their equipment from sparking catastrophic blazes. The money to make homes more resistant to wildfires through things like replacing wooden roofs and closing gaps where sparks can enter would be focused on low-income communities with high fire risk.

Local Government News

Trump and Garcetti, enemies in public, are quietly working out a deal on homelessness
Senior Trump administration officials have made quiet but significant progress toward a potential deal with Los Angeles officials that would provide federal funds and land to help shelter the city‘s and county's growing homeless population. The movement follows a series of phone calls involving Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and Los Angeles County Supervisor Kathryn Barger.
Los Angeles Times

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: