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 15, 2020
Law Enforcement News

Watch: Virtual Candlelight Vigil Honors Fallen LEOs
More than 300 fallen law enforcement officers were honored during the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund's virtual candlelight vigil Wednesday night. This year, 307 names are being engraved on the walls of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, DC, bringing the total to 22,217 officers killed in the line of duty memorialized there, according to a NLEOMF press release. “The current health crisis we are facing will not deter us from honoring the fallen,” said National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund CEO Marcia Ferranto. “By holding the annual Candlelight Vigil virtually, we have created an opportunity for the entire nation to light candles and stand in solidarity and support of the surviving families and law enforcement agencies."

Coronavirus: LAPD, LAFD Each Report New Case
The Los Angeles Police Department and Los Angeles Fire Department each reported one additional confirmed case of the novel coronavirus. As of Wednesday, 109 LAPD employees had tested positive for COVID-19, with 49 who have recovered and returned to duty and one in the hospital. LAFD reported 28 of its employees had tested positive for the virus, with 22 who had recovered and returned to duty. The remaining six were said to be isolated and recovering at home.

LAPD Community Policing Has Prevented Crime And Made Residents Feel Safer, Study Finds
The Los Angeles Police Department’s signature community policing program has prevented crime and made residents feel safer in public housing developments with entrenched gang problems and troubled relationships with law enforcement, according to a study by UCLA researchers. But challenges remain for the Community Safety Partnership, including confusion about its mission and perception that it fails to help teenagers at high risk of gang involvement, the researchers wrote in the report, which they presented to the five-member civilian Police Commission on Tuesday. “People felt it was safer to go outside, mingle with people, use green spaces,” said Jorja Leap, a gang expert and professor of social work at UCLA who was the study’s lead author. “Their lives were literally changed by CSP.” CSP launched in 2011 as a radical departure from traditional policing. Instead of arresting suspects, CSP officers would talk to residents and help solve their problems, whether through a firm word to quell minor misbehavior or by coaching a football team that taught positive values to young boys.

Amber Alert Child, Father Last Seen In North Hollywood Located
Minutes after an Amber Alert was issued for 5-year-old Victoria Suarez, authorities found the girl and took her father, 29-year-old Jose Suarez into custody. The pair was located in the Mar Vista area of Los Angeles Wednesday afternoon, according to the Los Angeles Police Department. Dispatch received a call from someone who had seen the Amber Alert and spotted the suspect's car at the corner of Maplewood Avenue and Palms Boulevard in Mar Vista, LAPD said. Responding officers took the suspect into custody without incident. LAPD says the girl was unharmed.

LAPD Arrests 39-Year-Old Woman For Selling Unapproved COVID-19 Testing Kits In Santa Monica
A woman was arrested in Santa Monica for selling COVID-19 testing kits that were not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, officials said Wednesday. Police served a search warrant on Tuesday near the 800 block of Broadway Avenue and subsequently arrested 39-year-old Ying Lien Wang, the Los Angeles Police Department said in a news release Wednesday. Investigators conducted three undercover operations in which they surveilled and bought from Wang prior to arresting her, officials said. They recovered 61 of the unapproved testing kits, which she sold through Craigslist for $50, according to a tweet from LAPD Commercial Crimes Division Captain Lillian L. Carranza. "None of the Covid-19 test kits recovered had been tested to meet United States safety standards and could pose a risk to anyone using them,” the department said.

FOX 11 Confronts Man Selling Fake N-95 Masks In DTLA For Quadruple Current Market Value
FOX 11 tracked down and confronted a man our investigative team found that has been selling fake N-95 masks to unsuspecting customers in downtown L.A. for $12 each, about four times the current market value of legitimate N-95 masks. FOX 11 purchased some of the masks while undercover, and brought them to an expert who identified them as counterfeit within a matter of seconds. The man has a kiosk set up on the sidewalk near 7th and Figueroa in front of a retail store complex. For several days, FOX 11’s investigative team watched the man sell what he claims are highly sought after, legitimate N-95 masks for $12 each or two for $20.The boxes containing the masks were labeled as N-95 respirators, and it said the product was made in China.

Authorities ID Man Stabbed To Death In Hawthorne; Brother In Custody
Authorities Wednesday identified a man who was allegedly stabbed to death in Hawthorne by his brother, who remains in custody. The stabbing occurred at 12:30 a.m. Saturday in the 4400 block of West 129th Street, according to Deputy Marvin Crowder of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, which is assisting Hawthorne police with the investigation. Andre Lynn Jr., 25, died at a hospital, according to the coroner's office.
Dravion Lynn, also 25, was arrested shortly after the crime and booked on suspicion of murder, with bail set at $1 million, according to the sheriff's department, which released no other details about the crime.

Consultant To Plead Guilty In L.A. City Hall Pay-To-Play Scheme
A real estate development consultant agreed Wednesday, May 13, to plead guilty to a federal racketeering charge for his role in a wide-ranging “pay-to-play” scheme in which developers bribed a member of the Los Angeles City Council and other officials to help ensure the success of their projects. The U.S. Attorney’s Office said 41-year-old George Chiang of Granada Hills will plead guilty to one count of conspiring to violate the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization statute at a date to be determined. The charge carries a sentence of up to 20 years behind bars. Chiang is the third person to agree to plead guilty in the continuing federal public corruption probe of City Hall. Political fundraiser Justin Jangwoo Kim agreed in March to plead guilty to a single count of federal program bribery for facilitating a $500,000 cash payment to an unnamed council member.

L.A. County Sees 100-Plus Hate Incidents Tied To Coronavirus
Citing an increase in hate-related incidents toward those with Asian or Pacific Islander ethnicity during the coronavirus pandemic, Los Angeles County officials are encouraging victims to make reports to local law enforcement. From February to April, the county had more than 100 reports of hate incidents related to the pandemic, said Robin Toma, the executive director of the Los Angeles County Human Relations Commission, during a virtual town hall on Wednesday. “These involve a wide range of incidents,” Toma said.
A person reported that another should be evicted from an apartment complex because the second is Asian and therefore has the virus. A woman walking her dog was verbally assaulted by a man claiming she had the virus just because she is Asian. A bomb threat targeted a major Asian institution. “It’s not happening just in any one part of the county, but all parts,” Toma said. “The majority of the targets and reports are coming from women.”

Gun Shops Flouted State Closure Orders In April As Industry Notched Another Big Month
Gun stores in several states have defied orders to close their doors as the coronavirus pandemic drives historic demand for firearms, according to background check data maintained by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and interviews with shop owners. 
Governors of five states — Massachusetts, Michigan, New Mexico, New York, and Washington — ordered gun dealers to close in April under statewide stay-at-home directives. But FBI data from April shows that dealers in those states initiated tens of thousands of gun background checks. In Washington State, where gun shops were shuttered by a March 25 stay-at-home order, 42,000 checks were initiated in April. 
Some businesses sell guns in addition to food and other household items that have been deemed essential — Walmart and hardware stores may have firearms departments, for example. At least two of the five states — Michigan and New York — permit these stores to continue selling guns under their orders, which may explain a portion of the checks in the FBI’s data.

Public Safety News

Man Seriously Burned In Pacoima Fire
A man was severely burned in a Pacoima house fire Wednesday, May 13 — eight other residents were injured. The fire broke out about 5:05 p.m. in the 12800 block of Mineola Street, near San Fernando Road, according to Brian Humphrey of the Los Angeles Fire Department. A man escaped the home while the fire was burning, and he was taken to a hospital in serious condition, Humphrey said. Forty-five firefighters extinguished the blaze by 5:30 p.m., and no other injuries were reported. Authorities are investigating if the fire started outside and then spread into the home.

"No, We Won't Be Shutdown For 3 More Months" Garcetti Clears Confusion Over Safer At Home Order
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti is clearing up some confusion from comments made earlier this week concerning the Safer at Home order being extended. During his press briefing Wednesday evening he addressed the public and assured people that Los Angeles won’t be shutdown for the summer. “No, we won’t be shutdown for three more months. That’s not what I heard, that’s not what I expect, that’s not what I hope,” Garcetti said. “Today was a great day for LA as people went back to our iconic beaches,” he added. On Tuesday, county public health director Barbara Ferrer created a stir when she told the county Board of Supervisors that some form of public health restrictions will likely be in place at least another three months due to the continuing threat of the coronavirus. 

The Two Big Reasons Why California Is Struggling To Control Coronavirus
California hasn’t seen the huge death toll from the novel coronavirus like New York and other hot spots, but the state is still struggling with a growing number of fatalities and confirmed cases. COVID-19 deaths in California remain at a stubborn plateau. Mirroring a trend seen nationally, California has not seen a sustained decline in deaths over the past month, a Los Angeles Times analysis found. During the seven-day period that ended Sunday, 503 people in California died from the virus — the second-highest weekly death toll in the course of the pandemic and a 1.6% increase from the previous week’s toll. The Times asked UC San Francisco epidemiologist and infectious disease expert Dr. George Rutherford, a former epidemic intelligence service officer with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about why the plateau persists. “As long as it’s going up, it has not ended. It’s got to come down for it to end,” he said. Rutherford offered two reasons why the disease is persisting: a certain percentage of people still must go out to work, and others are getting fed up with staying at home.

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: