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 28, 2020
Law Enforcement News

St. Louis Officers Injured Early Sunday After Man Fires At Police Vehicles
Three officers were injured early Sunday morning after a man fired at police vehicles, according to police reports. Peter Webb, 23, was charged Sunday with three counts of first-degree assault, armed criminal action, one count of unlawful use of a weapon and one count of resisting, police said. A little after 1 a.m. Sunday morning, officers were at the Crown Mart gas station at 1515 North 13th Street. Officers said that Webb drove past, and fired at a police vehicle. A 49-year-old officer pursued the vehicle as Webb allegedly continued firing, with bullets hitting the officer's car. At the intersection of South 14th and Chouteau Avenue the fleeing car hit the officer's car, and then a traffic light. Webb allegedly tried to run away, but two officers arrested him.

LAPD Expands Community Policing Program, Appoints Black Female Deputy Chief
As part of a reimagining of law enforcement after the killing of George Floyd, the Los Angeles Police Department is expanding its signature community policing program. The Community Safety Partnership, which began in 2011 in some of the city’s most troubled housing developments, is credited with reducing violent crime and improving relationships with residents through initiatives such as youth football teams. The expansion of CSP comes as other LAPD units are being closely scrutinized for potential cuts. Responding to days of street protests calling for resources to be shifted from policing to programs that help Black and Latino residents, the City Council recently slashed $150 million from the LAPD budget. Proponents of CSP say its expansion will transform the culture of the 10,000-officer LAPD, where success has traditionally been measured by arrests and crime statistics. Now, building trust with local residents will be paramount, Chief Michel Moore said. CSP will now have its own bureau within the LAPD, headed by Emada Tingirides, a Watts native who was one of the program’s founding officers. She will become the LAPD’s second Black female deputy chief.

Storied LAPD K-9 Aro Retires From The Force
After finding 103 suspects, and being shot and stabbed while on the job, a Los Angeles Police Department K-9 is retiring from the force. It's the end of an impressive career that started with a few question marks. When Aro first joined the LAPD, Sgt. Mike Goosby, the head trainer for LAPD K-9, thought he was a “knucklehead." “The dogs have to be social, and when Aro came in, he had a little bit of a social problem. Over time, with LAPD training, Sgt. Goosby said Aro became a skilled police dog. Officer Josh Kniss has been by Aro’s side for the past two and a half years. In June of 2017, Aro was shot and then stabbed shortly after. “He’s fought through them all and continues to have the energy that we have always known him to have,” Officer Kniss said. “It’s bittersweet to see such a good experienced police dog leave our unit because he brings us home every night,” Sergeant Goosby added.

LAPD Reports Another Employee Has Tested Positive For COVID-19 Bringing Total To 454
The Los Angeles Police Department reported Monday an additional employee has tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the department’s total to 454. Of the employees, 244 are at home recovering or self-isolating due to possible exposure, and 272 employees have returned to work. On Friday, the department announced 45-year-old Valentin Martinez had died from COVID-19 complications marking the first coronavirus-related death of a sworn officer.

1 Dead, 1 Wounded In Suspected Home Invasion Near Westlake District, Police Say
A person is dead following a suspected home invasion at an apartment complex near the Westlake District Sunday evening, Los Angeles police said. The incident occurred at about 5:45 p.m. in the 3000 block of Wilshire Boulevard. According to LAPD, a person was found dead in an apartment on the 16th floor of the complex, and another person was taken to a hospital with a gunshot wound. The relationship between the two people was unknown. Police described the incident as a possible home invasion gone wrong. Homicide detectives were at the scene and an investigation is ongoing.

LAPD: Seeking Suspects Who Vandalized Memorial Display On Police Building In Downtown LA
Authorities are seeking the public's help to track down suspects involved in vandalizing a memorial display on an outside wall of the Los Angeles Police Department's headquarters in downtown Los Angeles. The vandalism occurred about 5:30 p.m. Saturday, said Los Angeles police Officer Norma Eisenman of the media relations office. A group of protesters entered the property and defaced the wall and a display case with red paint. "The officers memorialized in these cases made the ultimate sacrifice for their city. Now we need your help finding that responsible for defacing our tribute to their sacrifice," an LAPD statement reads. The department released images of the damage, along with an image of a man with a face-covering defacing the structure with paint. 

Van Crashes Into North Hollywood Tree, Leaving Driver Critical In Possible Hit-and-Run
Los Angeles firefighters used the Jaws of Life early Monday morning to extricate the driver of a van that slammed into a North Hollywood tree in what may be a hit-and-run. LAFD responded at 1:22 a.m. to the corner of Chandler Boulevard and Camellia Avenue, where they found a GMC work van that ran into a fenced-off eucalyptus tree on the north end of North Hollywood Recreation Center Park. Firefighters used power tools, including the Jaws of Life, to free the driver from the smashed vehicle. He was the only occupant of the van, according to a fire department report. The man was transported to a local trauma center in critical condition, firefighters said. The van may have been involved in a hit-and-run crash, according to the report. The Los Angeles Police Department’s Valley Traffic Division is investigating the crash.

L.A. Man Pleads Not Guilty In Store Clerk’s Killing In Maywood
A Los Angeles man pleaded not guilty Monday to fatally stabbing a gas station convenience store clerk in Maywood and injuring another employee who tried to come to her aid. Kevin Steve Gomez, 25, could face a potential life prison term if convicted of one count each of murder and assault with a deadly weapon, along with an allegation that he used a knife in the June 24 killing of Nelly Baez, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office. Gomez, described by authorities as a transient, has remained behind bars in lieu of $2.03 million bail since his arrest. He was ordered to return to court Aug. 21, when a date is expected to be set for a preliminary hearing to determine whether there is enough evidence to proceed to trial.

Man Arrested On Suspicion Of Fatal Shooting At Ladera Heights House Party
A 29-year-old man was arrested in Compton on suspicion of fatally shooting a 25-year-old man at a house party in the unincorporated Ladera Heights area, authorities said Friday. Deputies assigned to the sheriff's Marina del Rey Station responded to a shots fired call about 11:30 p.m. Wednesday and found the victim, later identified by the coroner's office as Los Angeles resident Jakeil Reynolds, suffering from multiple gunshot wounds, according to Deputy James Nagao of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. Officers, neighbors say, responded to the 5800 block of Halm Avenue. An investigation determined Reynolds was attending a party at a home in the area when an argument occurred and he left the house, but was confronted again outside by the suspect and the pair began fighting. At some point, the suspect allegedly pulled a gun and shot Reynolds several times, Nagao said.

63-Year-Old Caroline Johnson Last Seen In Westmont Area On Sunday Considered ‘At Risk’ Missing
Authorities are searching for a 63-year-old woman with dementia who went missing from the Westmont area over the weekend. Caroline Johnson was last seen on Sunday, July 26 around noon near her home in the 1300 block of West 90th Street. She was last seen wearing a pink shirt, gray sweater and dark jeans. Johnson is described as 5 feet tall, 110 pounds with brown eyes, black hair and a “James Brown” tattoo on her right shoulder. Anyone with information about her whereabouts is asked to contact the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department Missing Person’s Bureau at 323-890-5500. Anonymous reports can also be provided by calling 800-222-8477.

Fake Rolex Watches, Louboutins, Versace Sunglasses Among $1.8M In Phony Designer Products Seized At LAX
U.S Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at LAX seized more than 3,500 counterfeit high-fashion products arriving via express air cargo from Hong Kong were seized at LAX, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Officers found the goods -- 3,524 items -- while doing an enforcement exam on a shipment of 99 boxes that weighed 3,827 pounds arriving on June 25. The shipment was falsely manifested as "Ladies Tops Storage Bag Empty" and was a clear attempt to circumvent U.S. law, the agency said. In total, the products would have an estimated retail price of $1.8 million. The fake merchandise included YSL, Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Versace, Gucci, Fendi, Nike, Under Armor, Adidas, Cartier, Rolex, Dior, Pandora, Casio, Michael Kors, Tiffany & Co., Burberry and Christian Louboutin.

Ex-UCLA Coach Jorge Salcedo Pleads Guilty To Accepting $200K In Bribes
A former UCLA men’s soccer coach pleaded guilty Monday to accepting $200,000 in bribes to help two students get into the school as recruits. Jorge Salcedo, 47, admitted to participating in the college admissions bribery scheme involving TV celebrities, other wealthy parents and elite universities across the country. He agreed in April to enter the guilty pleas. Salcedo was paid $100,000 to help California couple Bruce and Davina Isackson get their daughter into UCLA as a bogus soccer recruit, prosecutors said. The Isacksons have also pleaded guilty and have been cooperating with authorities in the hope of getting a lighter sentence. Salcedo also took a $100,000 bribe from the admissions consultant at the center of the scheme, William “Rick” Singer, to “recruit” the son of Xiaoning Sui, of Surrey, Canada, to his team, authorities said.

Public Safety News

In 145 Days, 176,028 Los Angeles County Residents Have Tested Positive For COVID-19, 4,375 Have Died
It's been 145 days since COVID-19 was declared a public health emergency in Los Angeles County. In that time, 176,028 people have tested positive for the virus and 4,375 have died. On Monday, the county reported 2,039 new coronavirus cases and 17 additional deaths. County health officials noted that the numbers reported on Monday's tend to be lower due to a lag in reporting from hospitals over the weekend. Hospitalizations have been an area of concern in recent weeks, with the number topping 2,200 in Los Angeles County for five consecutive days last week, the highest levels of the pandemic. On Monday, county health officials reported 2,017 patients are currently hospitalized with the virus, noting that 29% are in the Intensive Care Unit and 18% are on ventilators.

As L.A. County Nears State’s Safety Threshold For Positive Coronavirus Infections, It’s Unclear Which Direction California Is Heading
California continues to see a surge in COVID-19 cases and related hospitalizations in hotspot counties, while some areas have seen signs of stability over the last week. But as July nears its end, it’s unclear in which direction the state as a whole will veer. Los Angeles County health officials reported Sunday 10 additional deaths and 1,703 more cases of coronavirus infection, bringing the county’s total case count to more than 174,000. The number of reported cases and deaths are typically lower on Saturdays and Sundays, as well as on Mondays, because of limited testing and a lag in reporting data from testing laboratories over the weekend. There are currently 2,033 L.A. County residents hospitalized for the illness caused by the virus, 31% of whom are in intensive care. But those totals are incomplete “due to data from six non-reporting hospitals not being part of today’s update,” the county said in a statement.

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: