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

June 24, 2020
Law Enforcement News

2 Sought By LAPD After 2nd Man Dies In Shooting Outside CVS Pharmacy In Venice
A second victim shot outside a CVS Pharmacy in Venice Monday night has died from his injuries, police said, and now they’re looking for the gunman and another individual involved in the shooting. Officers responded to a shooting call about 9:15 p.m. at the store located at 119 Lincoln Blvd., according to the LAPD. Investigators initially said the shooting took place inside the store but now believe the two victims were approached outside and shot after some sort of altercation. Witnesses told police two groups of men met in the parking lot, where the fight occurred, an LAPD watch commander said. One of the victims was pronounced dead at the scene. “The second victim, I believe, crawled inside seeking shelter,” said LAPD Capt. Brian Morrison said early Tuesday morning. That victim was taken to a local hospital, but did not survive, Morrison said.

Cash, Casino Chips, Hotel Rooms And An Affair: Inside The Jose Huizar Indictment
The arrest of Los Angeles City Councilman Jose Huizar marks the biggest domino to fall in a multiyear federal investigation of corruption and alleged pay-to-play practices at City Hall. If convicted, Huizar could face up to 20 years in federal prison, according to the U.S. Department of Justice. Many of the allegations laid out by federal prosecutors on Tuesday have been described in previous court filings. But there are some new and noteworthy allegations, including: 1. Massages, hotel stays and an affair. Prosecutors have already alleged that Councilman Huizar took cash, casino chips and other bribes from developers with business in his district. But the newest filing says that one businessman also provided Huizar with hotel stays that allowed the councilman to conduct “discreet encounters with a woman with whom he was having an affair.” The same businessman also paid for Huizar to receive “massage services” on a number of occasions, which ran $300 per visit, prosecutors said in their filing. 

Man Arrested In Series Of Sexual Assaults; Second Man Sought
One man was in custody and a second man is being sought in connection with about a dozen recent sexual assaults in the Palms and Venice areas of Los Angeles, police said Tuesday. The crimes occurred between May 14 and June 19, according to the Los Angeles Police Department. Similar crimes may have occurred in the Culver City and Marina del Rey areas, police said. Early Monday, police arrested 21-year-old Darryll Mercadel of Los Angeles and booked him on suspicion of forced sexual penetration, police said. He was being held on $275,000 bail, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. "Thanks to video provided by concerned neighbors, investigators obtained a license plate of the suspect's vehicle and identified one of the suspects involved in the series," an LAPD statement said.

LAPD Coronavirus Cases Spike, Adding To Debate Over Role Of Protests In Spread
Coronavirus infections among Los Angeles police officers spiked in recent weeks, reflecting a broader increase in cases regionally and raising fresh questions about the role of protests in the spread. Police officials have said that officers were exposed on skirmish lines as they worked to disperse screaming crowds. Protesters say officers recklessly arrested people en masse without wearing masks, exposing not just themselves but others. In the last week, positive cases within the LAPD workforce jumped from 170 to 206, Chief Michel Moore told the civilian Police Commission on Tuesday. “This was a 21% increase and is about twice the rate of our historic rate of change over the history of the pandemic,” he said. Moore said the bulk of the LAPD employees who tested positive were sworn officers, though dozens were civilian employees. Three have been hospitalized with COVID-19, while many have recovered and returned to work. After the commission meeting, Moore said he attributed the increase in part “to the challenging conditions officers faced” during the recent protests and demonstrations.

Adult Film Star Ron Jeremy Charged In Rapes Of Three Women Dating To 2014
Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey announced Tuesday that adult film star Ron Jeremy has been charged with forcibly raping three women and sexually assaulting another in separate incidents dating back to 2014. The 67-year-old defendant's real name is Ronald Jeremy Hyatt. His arraignment was postponed. Hyatt was charged with three counts each of forcible rape and forcible penetration by a foreign object and one count each of forcible oral copulation and sexual battery, prosecutors said. In May 2014, the defendant is accused of forcibly raping a 25-year-old woman at a home in West Hollywood, officials said. Hyatt allegedly sexually assaulted two women, ages 33 and 46, on separate occasions at a West Hollywood bar in 2017, prosecutors said. He also is accused of forcibly raping a 30-year-old woman at the same bar in July 2019.

LAUSD Board Rejects Proposal To 'Defund' School Police Amid Growing Calls For Policing Overhaul
The Los Angeles Unified School District Board of Education rejected a proposal Tuesday evening that would have cut 90% of the school police budget by 2024. The proposal by board member Monica Garcia called for the School Police budget to be reduced by 50% in the 2021-22 fiscal year, then 75% the next year and 90% the following year, with funds redirected to the "highest need schools in support of African-American students." The board weighed several proposals for rethinking safety on school campuses as activists, students and parents rallied outside district headquarters calling for defunding of the L.A. School Police Department. The vote came at the end of a marathon board meeting that began at 9 a.m. with several hours of public testimony. The final board votes on a trio of resolutions addressing school policing weren't cast until 8:30 p.m. In the end, the board rejected all three of the resolutions, unable to reach consensus on any of them.

Woman Caught On Surveillance Video Sought For Defacing Martin Luther King Mural In Highland Park
Police are searching for the woman who was caught on surveillance video defacing a mural of Martin Luther King Jr. that was recently painted on the side of a cafe in Highland Park. The mural, originally painted a couple weeks ago amid the Black Lives Matter movement, was destroyed but the heartbroken owner of Cafe De Leche said she was amazed by the response and support from the community. "I never thought the artists was going to come back and do something else," said Anya Schodorf. The mural's artist, Tristan Eaton, immediately responded and returned on Monday, within mere hours of the defacing, to paint another mural of another civil rights activist, Malcolm X. The cafe owners have give surveillance video to police in the hopes of finding the vandal. If she or someone else comes back, so will the artists, they say.

Man Sentenced To Life In Prison For Killing Ex-Girlfriend, Her New Boyfriend
A man convicted of killing his ex-girlfriend and her new boyfriend in her Winnetka-area apartment was sentenced Tuesday to life in prison without the possibility of parole. Brian Anthony Gonzales, also known as Brian Hammons, was convicted in February of the Jan. 17, 2016, shooting deaths of Emily Fox, 22, of Winnetka, and Jerrad Scott, 24, of La Mesa. Jurors also found true the special circumstance allegations of murder during the commission of a kidnapping and multiple murders, along with allegations that Gonzales used and fired a handgun during the commission of the crimes. Gonzales, now 28, confronted the victims in a hallway of the apartment building, said Deputy District Attorney Manuel Almada. Scott tried to escape while Fox dialed 911, but Gonzales chased Scott down, brought him back to the scene at gunpoint and killed both of them, according to evidence presented at the defendant's trial.

Robert Durst Denied Request For Mistrial In L.A. Murder Case
A Los Angeles judge denied a request for a mistrial Tuesday in the murder case against New York real estate heir Robert Durst after a three-month delay from the coronavirus outbreak. Judge Mark Windham said Durst’s right to a fair trial has not been compromised by putting the case on hold in March just days after it began. It is scheduled to resume in July in an Inglewood courthouse that has a larger courtroom to accommodate social distancing. Defense attorney David Chesnoff argued by phone that Durst would not be able to get adequate legal representation because he and two other members of his legal team have been told by doctors not to appear in court because of the virus. He also argued that jurors, court staff, prosecutors and spectators could be exposed to the virus in the courtroom, restrooms, elevators and cafeteria.

Public Safety News

LA County Daily Coronavirus Cases Again Surpass 2,000 As Spread Continues
The coronavirus continued its rapid advance through Los Angeles County on Tuesday, with health officials again announcing more than 2,000 new confirmed cases of the virus, along with 34 new deaths. The county Department of Public Health also reported another increase in the number of people hospitalized -- now 1,515, which is above the recent averages of between 1,350 and 1,450 but still below the pandemic peaks of more than 1,900. More troubling was the continuing climb in the percentage of people testing positive for the virus. While the overall percentage of people testing positive remains at about 8%, the average over the past seven days has risen to 8.8%, up from 8.4% on Monday and from 5.8% just 11 days ago. T

L.A. County To Launch Pilot Program For Homeless People With Severe Mental Illness
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday, June 23, to launch a pilot program that aims to get homeless people gravely disabled by mental illness into treatment, even involuntarily, if necessary to save their lives. Supervisors Kathryn Barger and Mark Ridley-Thomas co-authored a motion to have Homeless Outreach and Mobile Engagement (HOME) teams provide critical treatment interventions for people experiencing homelessness and struggling with mental illness. HOME teams include mental health psychiatrists, mental health counselors, psychiatric nurses, psychiatric social workers, substance abuse counselors, medical case workers and peers, who make mental health evaluations on the street and offer voluntary crisis intervention services along with access to resources like housing.

Local Government News

L.A. Officials Propose $800 Million Plan To House 15,000 Homeless Individuals After Hotel Housing Efforts Falter
An $800 million plan was unveiled Tuesday to house 15,000 homeless people in Los Angeles County who are considered most vulnerable to the coronavirus. The county’s Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority presented a three-year COVID-19 recovery plan to the county Board of Supervisors to provide temporary housing with a goal of eventually finding permanent places to live for those on the streets. The money was expected to come mainly from government funding but details would need to be worked out. The U.S., California and local economies have been hammered by the impact of month-long lockdowns and business shutdowns aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19.

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: