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

July 16, 2020
Law Enforcement News

LAPD Officer Accuses Top Garcetti Advisor Of Sexual Harassment
A Los Angeles police officer who served as a bodyguard for Mayor Eric Garcetti for seven years has sued the city, alleging that he was sexually harassed repeatedly by one of the mayor’s top advisors and that Garcetti witnessed some of the inappropriate behavior but did not stop it. LAPD Officer Matthew Garza, who worked on the mayor’s security detail, alleged that longtime Garcetti consultant Rick Jacobs made crude sexual comments and touched him inappropriately over several years. The harassment took place on trips Garcetti took to Arizona, New Hampshire and elsewhere, the suit alleges. Garza, a sworn LAPD officer since 1997, began working on Garcetti’s security detail in October 2013, according to the lawsuit, filed Monday in Los Angeles Superior Court. The lawsuit alleges sex/gender harassment and the existence of a hostile work environment in violation of the California Fair Housing and Employment Act.

Berkeley Moves Toward Removing Police From Traffic Stops
After hours of emotional public testimony and a middle-of-the-night vote by Berkeley leaders, the progressive California city is moving forward with a novel proposal to replace police with unarmed civilians during traffic stops in a bid to curtail racial profiling. The City Council early Wednesday approved a police reform proposal that calls for a public committee to hash out details of a new Berkeley Police Department that would not respond to calls involving people experiencing homelessness or mental illness. It could take months, even years, to create a new department, but police and other law enforcement experts rebuked the idea as dangerous, not only for traffic safety but for the people tasked with pulling over drivers, who they say can be dangerous. “I think what Berkeley is doing is nuts,” said Mark Cronin, a director with the Los Angeles Police Protective League, a union for officers. “I think it’s a big social experiment. I think it’s going to fail and it’s not going to take long for, unfortunately, traffic collisions, fatalities to increase exponentially.”

LAPD Searching For Suspects Responsible In Shooting Death Of 15-Year-Old Girl
Officers with the Los Angeles Police Department are asking for the public’s help in locating the suspects responsible for the shooting death of a 15-year-old girl. Police say on July 11 around 12 p.m. the victim was in the 14100 block of South Vermont Avenue when she got into a physical altercation with several people. During the dispute, someone took out a gun and shot her. Officers with the Los Angeles Police Department are asking for the public’s help in locating the suspects responsible for the shooting death of a 15-year-old girl. The victim was transported to a local hospital where she was later pronounced dead. Detectives are attempting to locate witnesses and the suspects involved in the crime. Anyone with information is urged to call South Bureau Homicide Detectives Romero or Armenta at (323) 786- 5111.

Ice Cream Vendor Beaten Unconscious In Fashion District
Authorities are looking for a man and woman who violently attacked an ice cream vendor in the Fashion District of downtown L.A. Tuesday. According to a Los Angeles police spokesperson, the man was assault and knocked unconscious while selling ice cream at around noon in the area of Birch and 12th streets. The man was treated and released from a hospital. It’s unclear if anything was taken, police said. The two suspects fled in a dark colored Toyota Avalon. Police did not immediately release any surveillance video of the attack. The male suspect was described as Black, 5-foot-10, 165 pounds and wearing a white tank top and jeans. The woman was described as Black, 5-foot-4, 125 pounds, wearing a black sweater and dark jeans.

Tattoo Artist Pleads No Contest To Vehicular Manslaughter In Valley Village Crash That Killed YouTube Personality
A tattoo artist is facing up to four years in state prison for crashing a McLaren luxury sports car in Valley Village, killing YouTube personality Corey La Barrie on his 25th birthday, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced Wednesday. Daniel Joseph Silva, now 27, of North Hollywood, pleaded no contest Tuesday to one felony count of gross vehicular manslaughter in connection with the May 10 crash that killed Barrie, who was a passenger in the vehicle, according to Deputy District Attorney Yasmin Fardghassemi. He was initially charged with murder in connection with the crash. Silva was driving the 2020 McLaren 600LT at high speed eastbound on Huston Street when he lost control of the car, which ran off the road and hit a stop sign and tree on the northeast corner of Huston and Carpenter Avenue, police said.

LASD: Three Suspects Arrested For Attempted Murder After Shooting Woman Several Times, Child In Car Unharmed
Three suspects have been arrested for attempted murder after a woman was wounded in a shooting at a gas station in Lancaster Wednesday morning, officials said. The one-year-old child in the back of the victim's vehicle was not injured. Deputies responded to a Mobil gas station in the 800 block of East Avenue at about 1 a.m. and found the woman suffering from at least one gunshot wound, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. The woman was taken to a local hospital and is in critical condition. A preliminary investigation determined the woman was the victim of a robbery, the department said. The suspects were located in the city of Anaheim by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Dept. surveillance units. After a short vehicle pursuit by the Anaheim Police Department, the suspects were apprehended.

FBI Offering $5,000 For Suspect Wanted For Murder Of Ex-Girlfriend
A reward of up to $5,000 is being offered for information leading to the arrest of a man allegedly involved in the murder of his ex-girlfriend in Los Angeles more than 20 years ago, the FBI said Wednesday. The victim was found in December 1997 in her home with a shotgun wound to her upper torso, according to the agency. The FBI is seeking 49-year-old Saul Aguilar Jr., who has various aliases, including Marcelo Aguilar Garcia, Sal Aguilar, Saul Avila, Sal Fernando Avila and Sal Fernando. He is described as Hispanic, about 5-feet-8 inches tall, 170 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. He also has multiple tattoos, including a picture of a man and a woman, an Aztec warrior on his back, “Saul” on his chest, “Aguilar” on his stomach and “Surenos” in an unidentified area.

Charges Against The Social Workers Linked To Gabriel Fernandez’s Killing Will Be Dropped
The charges against four social workers connected with the case of 8-year-old Gabriel Fernandez, who was tortured and killed by his mother and her boyfriend, will be dropped Thursday, the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office said. Social workers Stefanie Rodriguez and Patricia Clement, as well as their supervisors, Kevin Bom and Gregory Merritt, were each charged with one felony count of child abuse and one felony count of falsifying public records after the boy died in May 2013. Prosecutors alleged they mishandled evidence of abuse the boy faced at the hands of his mother and her boyfriend, and missed repeated red flags. Judge George Lomeli had previously denied a motion to dismiss the charges against the social workers, saying they had demonstrated “an improper regard for human life” and “a lack of vigilance.”

West Hollywood Man Sentenced In $6M Modern Art Fraud Scheme
A Southern California man who authorities say tried to sell $6 million worth of phony paintings he claimed were created by Andy Warhol and other modern masters was sentenced Wednesday to five years in federal prison. Philip Righter, 43, of West Hollywood was sentenced in a federal court in Miami after pleading guilty to wire fraud, aggravated identity theft and tax fraud, the U.S. attorney's office said. Righter was given 60 months in prison in a case that was filed in L.A. The judge also handed down a five-year sentence in a Florida case in which Righter acknowledged trying to sell forgeries to the owner of a Miami art gallery. Both sentences will be served at the same time.

Calls For NYPD To Reinstate Anti-Crime Unit As Shootings Rise In New York City
Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams is calling on the New York Police Department to reinstate its recently-shuttered anti-crime unit as the Big Apple continues to struggle with a surge in gun violence. The call from one of the city’s most influential Black leaders comes days after the tragic shooting death of 1-year-old Davell Gardner, who was struck in the stomach with a bullet during a family cookout. “I think that a total elimination is something we need to reevaluate,” Adams, a former police officer, told CBS New York. “Right now, bad guys are saying if you don’t see a blue and white you can do whatever you want.” “Babies are not supposed to be wearing these in a coffin,” Adams added while holding up a pair of baby shoes. The NYPD Anti-Crime Unit was shut down in mid-June amid protests sparked by the death of George Floyd, with its roughly 600 plainclothes officers being reassigned to other divisions.

Public Safety News

Alarming Coronavirus Increases Continue In LA County; Testing Expanding
The coronavirus continued its alarming spread across Los Angeles County Wednesday, with more than 40 additional fatalities and 2,700 new cases confirmed, and health officials said they would be dramatically expanding access to testing in hard-hit communities. County public health director Barbara Ferrer said hospitalization numbers also continue to increase, with the county seeing its highest patient numbers of the pandemic. "We are in an alarming and dangerous phase in this pandemic here in LA County and we're in this place along with 29 other counties across the state,'' Ferrer said. "These alarming trends reflect behaviors from three weeks ago, and it will take several weeks to see if our behavior now, including the rollback of previously opened sectors, slows the spread of the virus. What we do today impacts our lives in the weeks and the months ahead.''

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: