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

May 13, 2020
Law Enforcement News

LAPD Shootings Hit 30-Year Low In 2019; Less-Lethal Force Has Increased
Shootings by Los Angeles police officers reached a 30-year low in 2019, with fatal shootings declining for the fourth year in a row, according to a new report on police use of force. Los Angeles Police Department officers opened fire on 26 suspects last year, compared with 115 in 1990. Of those last year, 21 people were struck and 12 killed, continuing a downward trend in deaths since 21 were fatally shot in 2015. The number of incidents in which suspects were injured dropped by 4% from the year before, the report found, and contact between members of the public and police dogs was at the lowest point in five years. At the same time, the number of incidents in which officers used less-lethal force, such as strikes and “takedowns,” reached a five-year high, with 2,320 such encounters occurring last year. Incidents in which batons were used increased by 38%.

Police Seek Bandits Who Stole Tricycle Belonging To Sherman Oaks Teen With Special Needs
Police are searching for the three perpetrators who were caught on camera stealing a custom-made tricycle that belongs to a Sherman Oaks teen with special needs. Brian, 15, has Down syndrome and according to his mom, he loves three things: her, school and his tricycle. Surveillance footage captured a trio of thieves going on a crime spree down an alley behind apartments located on Riverside Drive on Monday, May 4 around 5 a.m., police said. They were seen stealing tools, then using the stolen tools to steal the tricycle, which was triple locked next to Brian’s family apartment. "Police are hoping that someone will recognize these men and more importantly, tell detectives where the bright red tricycle is, so they can return it to Brian. His mom can’t replace it [so] that’s not an option," LAPD Lt. Jim Gavin said.

Hair Salons, Gyms And Smoke Shops Among 60 L.A. Businesses Facing Charges For Staying Open
Hair salons, gyms, a massage parlor and several smoke shops are among the 60 businesses facing misdemeanor charges for allegedly remaining open in violation of stay-at-home orders in Los Angeles, according to the city attorney’s office. L.A. City Attorney Mike Feuer on Tuesday announced charges against dozens of businesses within the city and areas including Venice, Sherman Oaks, Tarzana, North Hollywood and Studio City. He cited a grim warning given Tuesday by the nation’s top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, who said states and countries could “turn back the clock” by lifting restrictions too soon. “As Dr. Fauci warned this morning, all our hard work to slow the spread of COVID-19 could be squandered if businesses violate the rules and open prematurely,” Feuer said in a news release.

Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer Discusses Increase In Racism Aimed At Asian Americans
While the coronavirus crisis has brought out a lot of good in people, unfortunately, people have also seen some negative effects with an increase in reports of hate speech directed at the Asian American community. There's also been an increase in complaints about non-essential businesses opening up despite the safer-at-home order. In the video above, Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer joined ABC7 Tuesday morning to talk about how his office is handling those issues.

Assault Suspect With Baby In His Car Gives Up After Pursuit In L.A. Area
A domestic dispute suspect accused of assaulting a law enforcement officer led officers on a chase from East Los Angeles to South Los Angeles on Tuesday night, with a baby in the car, before surrendering. Deputies were sent to the 600 block of Burger Avenue, near South Humphreys Avenue and the Long Beach (710) Freeway, about 8:45 p.m., according to Lt. Jose Sandoval of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s East Los Angeles Station. “The suspect assaulted law enforcement,” Sandoval said, but he was not able to elaborate. The suspect then fled the scene, and the California Highway Patrol pursued him in the downtown, Mid-City and South Los Angeles areas. The suspect pulled over near Crenshaw and Jefferson boulevards shortly before 9:30 p.m., after sparks were flying from his car’s rims, according to Officer Patrick Kimball of the California Highway Patrol.

Anti-Semitic Incidents In U.S. Hit Record High In 2019, Report Says
American Jews were targets of more anti-Semitic incidents in 2019 than any other year over the past four decades, a surge marked by deadly attacks on a California synagogue, a Jewish grocery store in New Jersey and a rabbi’s New York home, the Anti-Defamation League reported Tuesday. The Jewish civil rights group counted 2,107 anti-Semitic incidents in 2019, finding 61 physical assault cases, 1,127 instances of harassment and 919 acts of vandalism. That’s the highest annual tally since the New York-based group began tracking anti-Semitic incidents in 1979. It also marked a 12% increase over the 1,879 incidents it counted in 2018. Jonathan Greenblatt, the group’s chief executive, attributes last year’s record high to a “normalization of anti-Semitic tropes,” the “charged politics of the day” and social media. This year, he said, the COVID-19 pandemic is fueling anti-Semitic conspiracy theories.

Virus Unleashes Wave Of Fraud In US Amid Fear And Scarcity
A 39-year-old former investment manager in Georgia was already facing federal charges that he robbed hundreds of retirees of their savings in a Ponzi scheme when the rapid spread of COVID-19 presented an opportunity. Christopher A. Parris started pitching himself as a broker of surgical masks amid the nationwide scramble for protective equipment in the first desperate weeks of the outbreak, federal authorities said. He was soon taking in millions of dollars. Except there were no masks. Law enforcement officials say Parris is part of what they are calling a wave of fraud tied to the outbreak. Homeland Security Investigations, an arm of the Department of Homeland Security, is leading a nationwide crackdown. It has opened over 370 cases and so far arrested 11 people, as part of “Operation Stolen Promise,” according to Matthew Albence, acting director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Cold Cases Get Colder As Pandemic Wears On
Cold cases are getting colder. Detectives are struggling to connect with victims through thick masks, and investigators accustomed to wearing plainclothes are digging out their dusty uniforms for patrol duty as the coronavirus pandemic rages. Police departments nationwide are grappling with changes the virus has wrought on their investigations, even as law enforcement agencies report major decreases in crime due to stay-at-home orders. Authorities say enough wrongdoing abounds to keep police busy, and detective work must still be in-person and hands-on, despite COVID-19. Evidence has to be collected, statements must be taken in person and death notifications need to be made face-to-face. "You put on gloves and you put on masks and you’ve still got to go out there and do it,” said Los Angeles Police Capt. Jonathan Tippet, head of the elite Robbery-Homicide Division.

Public Safety News

2 Patients Rescued From Vehicle That Fell 200 Feet In Tujunga
Two 60-year-olds, at least one in critical condition, were freed from a vehicle that fell about 200 feet down a hillside in Tujunga Tuesday afternoon. Rescue crews were dispatched to the area between the 7600 block of Memory Lane and the 11000 block of Plainview Avenue about 5:40 p.m., according to Margaret Stewart of the Los Angeles Fire Department. A 60-year-old woman in critical condition was freed from the vehicle about 6:15 p.m., Stewart said. She was brought up the hillside through a two-line rope system then airlifted to a trauma center. Firefighters removed the roof of the vehicle in order to rescue the second patient, a 60-year-old man, in serious-to-critical condition, who was brought up the hillside with the rope system then taken to a hospital by ambulance, according to Stewart.

LA County's Stay-At-Home Order Will Likely Remain In Place For Next Three Months, Officials Say
Los Angeles County officials are recommending that the stay-at-home order be extended for the next three months as the region continues efforts to reduce the spread of the coronavirus. At a Board of Supervisors meeting on Tuesday, county Public Health Director Dr. Barbara Ferrer said the order will "with all certainty" be extended unless there is a "dramatic change to the virus and tools at hand." Ferrer's comments came during a debate over how long the county's moratorium on evictions should remain in place. Last month, officials extended the county's "safer at home" order until at least May 15. The region's reopening would be based on a four-point plan whose prerequisites would have to be achieved before the easing of restrictions could begin.

New Signs That Coronavirus Restrictions Are Here For The Long Haul In California
Even as officials laid out more tentative plans to reopen California’s battered economy, there were growing signs Tuesday that life would not be getting back to normal any time soon. The 23-campus California State University system plans to all but cancel in-person classes in the fall and instead will offer instruction primarily online, with some limited exceptions that allow for in-person activity. The decision comes as schools throughout the country grapple with how long to keep campuses closed amid the coronavirus crisis. “Our university when open without restrictions and fully in person … is a place where over 500,000 people come together in close and vibrant proximity,” Chancellor Timothy White said at a meeting of Cal State’s Board of Trustees. “That approach sadly just isn’t in the cards now.” He also acknowledged that the university system lacks the resources to provide coronavirus testing for everybody and trace the contacts of infected people should there be an outbreak on a campus.

Local Government News

LA County To Use Text Messages To Ensure Court Appearances
Los Angeles County plans to use text messages to try to ensure court appearances by those out on bail as part of a one-year pilot program approved by the Board of Supervisors Tuesday. Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas recommended the low-cost solution in an attempt to raise appearance rates at court hearings and other mandatory appointments. Ridley-Thomas said he expects it will also prevent technical violations that typically prompt bench warrants and often land violators in jail. "We must take advantage of the readily available, cost effective, emerging technologies to help reduce failures to appear and, at the same time, continue doing all that we can to keep individuals safe during this crisis," Ridley-Thomas said.

LA Councilman Seeks to Reward Telecommuting, Working at Home
Councilman David Ryu introduced a motion Tuesday that would create incentives for businesses and government officials to work from home, which could help Los Angeles reduce its greenhouse gasses. The motion, which cites health and economic costs of air pollution caused by vehicles, seeks ways for the public and private sectors to adopt remote work, telecommuting and staggered work-day programs, which have been practiced widespread since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. "Los Angeles has learned a lot since the start of the coronavirus pandemic," Ryu said. "… We can learn to live without dangerous air pollution and standstill traffic. Air pollution has been responsible for far too much illness and death in our city, especially among communities of color."

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: