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 21, 2020
Law Enforcement News

Georgia Deputy Sheriff Fatally Struck While Responding To Crash
A deputy sheriff was killed in the line of duty Sunday while responding to an unrelated single-vehicle crash on a Georgia highway. Deputy Sheriff Bill Garner, 53, was struck by another vehicle when the driver lost control and entered the median. The man who was driving has been charged with vehicular homicide. Garner was taken to a local hospital where he died of his injuries. Garner was with the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office for one year, having previously served for 12 years at the Oconee County Sheriff’s Office and Pendegrass Police Department. He leaves behind his wife, parents and brother.

LAPD, LAFD Report More Employees Have Tested Positive For COVID-19
The Los Angeles Police Department reported Monday an additional 15 employees have tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the department’s total to 419. Of the employees, 248 are at home recovering or self-isolating due to possible exposure, and 226 employees have returned to work. On July 3, Senior Detention Officer Erica McAdoo died from coronavirus complications. Additionally, the Los Angeles Fire Department has reported five additional employees have tested positive for the virus bringing the department’s cumulative caseload to 137, the city’s Emergency Operations Center said. Of the employees, 91 have recovered and returned to work and 46 are recovering at home.

Woman Stabbed To Death In Westlake Area
A woman was stabbed to death early Monday in the Westlake area of Los Angeles. The stabbing was reported at 12:41 a.m. at Mountain View Avenue and Beverly Boulevard, according to a dispatcher in the Los Angeles Police Department’s Operations Center. The woman, believed between 30 and 40 years-old, was stabbed “multiple times,” the dispatcher said. She was pronounced dead at the scene. The suspect or suspects fled the scene before police arrived, the dispatcher said.

Vehicle Thefts In LA At Record Levels As Coronavirus Stay-At-Home Orders Mean More Cars Parked On City Streets
Los Angeles has had more vehicle thefts during the second quarter of this year than at any time in at least a decade, according to an analysis released Monday, and Coronavirus may be to blame. Officials said the coronavirus pandemic has left more vehicles on city streets as owners obeyed stay-at-home orders, creating new theft targets for vehicle thieves. The report was produced by Crosstown, a nonprofit news organization based out of the USC Annenberg School of Journalism. A Crosstown analysis of Los Angeles Police Department data showed that 5,744 vehicles were stolen from April-June, up 57.7% from the same period last year. The spike coincides with the arrival of the coronavirus pandemic, Crosstown reported. “Although crime in general has decreased since mid-March, when schools were closed and businesses were shuttered in the effort to slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus, vehicle thefts have spiked,” the Crosstown report said.

Los Angeles Man Accused Of Throwing 40-Ounce Glass Bottle At Santa Monica Officer During May 31 Protest
A 38-year-old man has been arrested in connection with injuring a Santa Monica police officer during a protest on May 31, officials announced Monday. Drew Miller was arrested Friday and is accused of throwing a 40-ounce glass bottle at the back of a police officer’s head during civil unrest in the wake of George Floyd’s killing. Police said the bottle shattered on the officer’s helmet and the officer was injured. Miller was booked on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon on a peace officer and is being held on $500,000 bail, officials said. No further details about the incident or arrest were released Monday.

Investigation Underway After Car Found Plunged Into Lake In Lincoln Heights
Police are investigating after a car was pulled out of a lake in the Lincoln Heights area early Monday morning. The four-door silver AUDI A7 was found submerged in the water with its windows down and air bags deployed. Investigators believe the vehicle may have been ditched intentionally because a metal bar was found on the accelerator, according to the Los Angeles Police Department. Police got a call around midnight reporting the incident after a driver noticed the car’s tail lights under the water. Divers searched the shallow lake for about an hour and found no signs that anyone had drowned.

Authorities Circulate Footage Of Vehicles Involved In Fatal Hit-And-Run
Police Monday circulated a video of vehicles involved in a fatal hit-and-run in South Los Angeles, and a $50,000 reward is available for information leading to the suspects’ arrests. The 49-year-old victim was walking westbound on Vernon Avenue Thursday night when he was struck by a light-colored SUV just east of Wall Street — which launched him into the eastbound lanes of Vernon Avenue, where he was struck by a light-colored Dodge Charger, the Los Angeles Police Department reported. Officers responded to the crash scene at about 10:25 p.m. Thursday. Paramedics rushed the victim, who had multiple blunt force trauma injuries, to a hospital, where he died shortly after his arrival. Police said both drivers failed to stop, identify themselves or render aid.

Street Vendors On Edge After Paletero Beaten Unconscious In Downtown L.A., Another One Fatally Shot In Texas
Miguel Medina stopped his push cart in downtown Los Angeles and reached inside for a paleta. Within seconds, he was knocked unconscious. When the 58-year-old street vendor opened his eyes, he was on the ground and surrounded by firefighters, he says. His head “hurt a lot” and his wallet was gone. Medina, who was robbed on Tuesday, is among several street vendors who been have beaten and robbed in recent months in states like California, Texas and Colorado. As cities shut down and reopened during the coronavirus pandemic, vendors have relied on selling Mexican ice pops known as paletas, corn on the cob and other snacks to survive. But some like Medina, who has been a paletero for nearly a decade, are considering quitting a job that has allowed them to bring joy to their communities.

2 Men Dead, Woman Critically Wounded Following Shooting At Burbank Home
Homicide detectives were investigating a shooting at a Burbank home that left two men dead and a woman critically wounded early Tuesday, authorities said. The Burbank Police Department began receiving calls of gunshots fired around 1:25 a.m. According to officials, one of the calls came from a woman who was screaming and stated that her husband was dying. Burbank police officers arrived at the home in the 900 block of Cambridge Drive, located across from Bel Aire Park. Arriving officers discovered a couple inside the home suffering from gunshot wounds. Investigators discovered a second man on the driveway who was pronounced dead at the scene. It is currently unknown how the man in the driveway is related to the couple.

Man Tied To Glendale Firm Extradited To U.S. On Allegations Of Hacking And Other Online Schemes
A Cyprus national who was allegedly involved in crimes while working for an internet business in Glendale has been extradited from that country to the United States to face several computer hacking-related charges, U.S. government officials said Saturday. Joshua Polloso Epifaniou, 21, a resident of Nicosia, Cyprus, arrived in New York on Friday. He had been arrested in his home country in February 2018. A five-count indictment filed in the Northern District of Georgia charges Epifaniou with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, wire fraud, conspiracy to commit computer fraud and identity theft, and extortion related to a protected computer. According to the indictment, between approximately October 2014 and November 2016, Epifaniou worked with co-conspirators to steal personal identifying information from user and customer databases at victim websites in order to extort the websites into paying ransoms under threat of public disclosure of the sensitive data.

Recently Released Predator Cary Jay Smith Continues To Move Around SoCal, Not Required To Register As Sex Offender
The release of a convicted sex offender has led to warnings from law enforcement officers throughout Riverside, Orange and San Diego counties, informing residents that he may be nearby. 59-year-old Cary Jay Smith was released on Tuesday from a state psychiatric facility after 21 years. He was first admitted in 1999 after his wife gave authorities a letter she said he wrote detailing sex acts he fantasized about having with a 7-year-old boy. Smith was required to register as a sex offender after pleading guilty to a 1985 misdemeanor sexual offense involving a child. That registration requirement was removed in 2005 for an unknown reason, prompting officials and locals to urge the governor to reinstate it. For now, Smith is not required to register as a sex offender and was expected to return to living in Orange County.

Public Safety News

3 Firefighters Back To Work After Explosion In May Left A Dozen Firefighters Injured
Two more injured firefighters from an explosion in downtown Los Angeles in May have returned to active duty. A total of 12 firefighters were injured in the fire that broke out in the Toy District on May 16. More than 230 firefighters responded to the scene. As firefighters were responding to the blaze inside the building at 327 East Boyd Street, the site of a butane honey oil supplier called Smoke Tokes, there was a “significant explosion,” said LAFD Captain Erik Scott. There are now three total firefighters back on the job after the incident. One firefighter remains hospitalized in the burn unit but is expected to return to duty at some point. The remaining firefighters are still recovering at home. The official cause is still under investigation but authorities believe the fire and explosion were caused by butane tanks stored inside the business.

LA Program To Crack Down On Workplaces Not Complying With COVID-19 Safety Guidelines
City workers will be dispatched Monday throughout Los Angeles as part of the Business Ambassadors program to advise or cite businesses not following coronavirus safety guidelines. Mayor Eric Garcetti announced Friday during his COVID-19 briefing the program would be relaunched, adding that the city has received 549 complaints in the past two weeks about businesses not following health protocols for remaining open during the pandemic. The goal of the program is to help workplaces better enforce safety guidelines. Businesses that will receive a visit will be those where there is a report of a problem and non-compliance. Garcetti said the program was used early on during the pandemic and was a successful tool in getting businesses to follow guidelines.

L.A. May Face A Grim Distinction: The Biggest U.S. City With A 2nd Stay-Home Order
Los Angeles was one of the first major cities in the nation to impose a stay-at-home order when the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Now, L.A. may soon have the dubious distinction of being the biggest U.S. city to receive a second stay-at-home order, amid a surge of coronavirus cases and hospitalizations that so far shows few signs of slowing. For two weeks, Mayor Eric Garcetti has warned that the city is close to returning to some type of stay-at-home order due to the new increase — which became clear in June after businesses began to rapidly reopen in May — but has held off. On Sunday, he said a decision will probably come in the next week or two as officials determine whether restrictions imposed in late June and July — such as closing bars, indoor restaurant dining and shopping malls — slowed the rapid community 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: