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

February 19, 2020
Law Enforcement News

Texas Man Pleads Not Guilty To Killing LEO During Capital Murder Trial
A 28-year-old Texas man pleaded not guilty during the first day of his capital murder trial for the 2018 killings of a Dallas-area police officer and another man. Brandon McCall entered the plea Monday to charges that he fatally shot of his friend, Rene Gamez II, and then killed Richardson police officer David Sherrard, KXAS-TV reports. If convicted, McCall could be sentenced to death or life in prison without parole. Police have said McCall killed Gamez, 30, in an apartment complex in the suburb north of Dallas and then shot Sherrard in the chest as he entered the apartment after responding to reports of shooting. The 37-year-old officer was a married father of two daughters and later died at a hospital. McCall barricaded himself in the apartment after the shooting and fired at random during an hours-long standoff before a officers arrested him.
Man Fatally Shot In Hollywood Hills Area; Suspects Sought
A man was fatally shot Wednesday in the Hollywood Hills, and police sought suspects who fled the scene. The man, in his 20s, was wounded about 4:30 a.m. in the 2000 block of Hercules Drive and died at a hospital, according to the Los Angeles Police Department. His name was not immediately released. No descriptions were immediately available of the suspects, who were wearing masks, police said. 

Man Arrested In Sexual Assault Of 2 Teenage Boys In Reseda: LAPD
Authorities on Tuesday announced the arrest of a man accused of luring and sexually assaulting two teenage boys in Reseda, asking any additional victims to come forward. Lewis Sibomana, a 30-year-old Reseda resident, was arrested on Feb. 9 and remained in jail Tuesday on $225,000 bail, county inmate records showed. On Jan. 21, Sibomana “befriended” a 16-year-old boy at a bus stop, the Los Angeles Police Department said in a news release. He eventually lured the victim to his apartment, where he gave the the boy alcohol, according to LAPD. “The victim fell in and out of sleep and the suspect sodomized him,” police said. On Feb. 9, Siboma allegedly persuaded another boy, 15, to come to his residence. He also served that victim alcohol, causing the teenager to fall asleep, LAPD said. The victim woke up as Siboma performed oral sex, according to police.
Second Defendant Pleads Guilty In 1993 Westlake Apartment Arson That Killed 10
A former drug dealer who played a pivotal role in a deadly arson that claimed 10 lives in a Los Angeles apartment complex in 1993 pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter Tuesday, officials said. Johanna Lopez, who has been in police custody since 2011, pleaded guilty to two counts of voluntary manslaughter and is expected to be sentenced to 22 years in prison later this year, said Greg Risling, a spokesman for the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office. Lopez, 54, had been paying the 18th Street Gang for the right to sell drugs in a section of Westlake in 1993 when she ran afoul of an apartment manager who began taking steps to curtail drug sales in her building, according to court records. Lopez urged two gang members to intervene on her behalf, a transcript of a preliminary hearing in her case disclosed. Soon after, a fire engulfed the complex, which was largely populated by Latino immigrants.

Lake View Terrace Man Pleads Not Guilty To Killing Two Neighbors
A Lake View Terrace man pleaded not guilty Thursday to charges that he shot and killed two neighbors and wounded a third during an argument about tire-screeching noises. Richard Chico Nevarez — also known as “Slick Rick” — is charged with two counts of capital murder for the Aug. 28, 2016, shooting deaths of Moises Farias, 68, and Edgar Canaan, 47, along with one count each of attempted murder and assault with a semi-automatic firearm, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office. The murder charges include the special-circumstance allegation of multiple murders, along with allegations of use of a handgun and a 2008 conviction for first-degree burglary. Prosecutors will decide later whether to seek the death penalty against the 38-year-old defendant, who was charged last April. Farias, Canaan and a third neighbor got into an argument with Nevarez’s family over tire-screeching noises, and Nevarez arrived at the scene and allegedly opened fire on the three men as the argument subsided, Deputy District Attorney Bradley Lieberman said.

LASD Detectives Ask For Help To Identify H&R Driver Who Hit Three People
Sheriff’s detectives asked for the public’s help Monday to find a hit-and-run driver that ran down a grandmother and two children in La Mirada almost a year ago. The crash occurred about 1:15 p.m. Feb. 20, 2019, in the 14800 block of Escalona Road, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department reported. The grandmother Maria Carmen Chavarria was killed and the two children injured. The vehicle was described as a four-door sedan, authorities said. Anyone with information on this driver was asked to call the detectives at the sheriff’s Norwalk Station at 562-863-8711. Tipsters can also call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS.

Long Beach Police Arrest Teen Gang Members On Suspicion Of Murder, Attempted Murder
Long Beach police arrested three teenaged gang members for their alleged involvement in two murders and five non-fatal shootings. The arrests were part of a multi-agency investigation into gang-related crimes committed between Nov. 21 and Feb. 4, said Long Beach police Chief Robert Luna. Dubbed "Operation Broken Hearts,'' the investigation was led by Long Beach police detectives, assisted by personnel from the Los Angeles Police Department, Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation and Los Angeles County parole officers. Authorities served warrants at about two dozen locations in Long Beach, Los Angeles, Norwalk and Paramount, Luna said. Two teenage boys, ages 16 and 17, were booked on suspicion of murder and attempted murder; and another 17-year-old boy was booked on suspicion of attempted murder.
California Man Pleads Guilty To Killing 6 People, Including His 6-Month-Old Child, His Girlfriend And His Own Mother
A man who killed five people in a California central valley home was sentenced Tuesday to life in prison without possibility of parole. Martin Martinez, 35, entered pleas of murder with special circumstances of lying in wait and committing multiple murders in the 2015 attack. In addition to five life sentences, he was given an 11-year sentence after pleading guilty to voluntary manslaughter in the 2014 death of a 2-year-old boy. Prosecutors said that on July 18, 2015, Martinez entered the home through a garage and stabbed to death his mother, Ana Brown-Romero, 57, in the laundry room. He then went into the home and suffocated Elizabeth Ripley, 6; Esmeralda Navarro, 5, and 6-month-old Rachael Martinez. He then waited for Amanda Crews, 38, to return home and stabbed her to death, prosecutors said. Martinez and Crews had been dating and Rachael was their daughter, authorities said. The other girls were the daughters of Crews from a previous marriage.

Willow The Police Dog Sniffs Out Internet Crimes Against Children
Since she started her new job in San Diego a couple months ago, Willow the English Labrador has already proven her worth to handler Ron Burleson. The 2-year-old pup, specially trained to sniff out electronic storage devices, has gone out on a half dozen warrant and probation searches with Burleson, an investigator with the county district attorney’s office. On one outing, she found a cellphone that law enforcement officers had missed. “We are confident we are going to be able to find things that were missed before,” Burleson said. The pair is assigned to San Diego’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, a group that draws upon resources from local, state and federal law enforcement agencies to target offenders who use the internet to sexually exploit children. Decked out in a special vest that touts her electronic detection abilities, Willow looks for a distinct chemical compound used in electronic devices such as cellphones, thumb drives, hard drives and memory cards. Such devices are often hidden by predators and can be difficult for law enforcement officers to find.

Public Safety News

1 Firefighter Killed, 1 Missing In Blaze At Central California Library
One firefighter was killed and another was unaccounted for after a blaze at a Central Valley library, according to KTLA sister station KGPE/KSEE in Fresno. The flames broke out shortly after 4 p.m. at the public library in Porterville, an agricultural community between Fresno and Bakersfield, Tulare County fire officials said. Staff called 911 when they noticed flames in the children’s section of the library, which has about 77,000 books, city librarian Vikki Cervantes told the Visalia Times-Delta. Flames shot through the roof of the library, and crews on scene quickly called a two-alarm fire. The location is just yards away from Porterville Fire Department. Cellphone video from a bystander shows flames and clouds of black and gray smoke coming from the windows. The library was built in 1953 and it did not have a sprinkler system installed, authorities said. More than 50 state, county and city crews continued to battle the stubborn blaze hours later.

Local Government News

LA City Committee Seeks to Limit Traffic Caused by Tour Buses
A Los Angeles City Council committee advanced a motion Tuesday that would give the city's Department of Transportation the authority to limit which streets tour buses can use on their routes. The issue for some residents of the Hollywood Hills, who spoke at the council's Trade, Travel and Tourism Committee meeting, is that the buses cause long traffic delays, and sometimes block people from getting out of their own driveways when queuing up. "Tourism has an important role in our city and our local economy, but public safety must come first," said Councilman David Ryu, who filed the motion. "For far too long, certain tour bus operators have been putting the public and their passengers at risk by making unsafe turns, illegal U-turns, speeding, slowing or suddenly stopping while traveling on narrow hillside streets that were never built to accommodate them."

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: