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

September 3, 2020
Law Enforcement News

L.A. Council Backs A Pay Cut For Many City Workers, Blocks Request To Target LAPD Raises
Council members approved a declaration of fiscal emergency, which helps clear the way for many civilian city employees to receive one unpaid day off every two weeks — a 10% pay cut. Councilman Mike Bonin cast the lone vote against the furloughs, saying they would force LAPD officers to pick up some of the work of their furloughed co-workers, reducing the number of neighborhood patrols and slowing police response times. Bonin asked his colleagues to first instruct the city’s negotiators to start the process of meeting with the Police Protective League, the union that represents LAPD officers, and present a proposal for delaying their scheduled raises and bonuses. The council rejected that proposal on a 9 to 3 vote after the city’s top budget official said negotiators are seeking savings from every employee union, including the league. LAPD union officials have previously said they cannot be forced to give up their raises and have no intention of doing so. On Wednesday, the league criticized Bonin for singling them out, noting that the council already cut the LAPD by $150 million in July, taking the department down to 9,757 officers — its lowest level since 2008. In a statement, the union’s board pointed out Bonin voted last year to approve the raises. “He’s having a tough time keeping track of all his flip-flops when it comes to public safety,” the union board said. “He voted to pay a competitive wage to police officers to recruit and retain them, and now wants to cut their pay to help his political ambitions.”

Rapper Silento Arrested In LA And Santa Ana For Alleged Assault With A Deadly Weapon And Domestic Violence
The rapper known as Silento was arrested for alleged domestic violence and assault with a deadly weapon in two separate incidents in as many days in Orange County and Los Angeles, authorities said. The rapper, whose real name is Richard Lamar Hawk, was taken into custody on Friday by Santa Ana police after a report of a domestic disturbance in the 100 block of MacArthur Boulevard, authorities said. He was booked and released on a charge of inflicting corporal injury on a spouse or cohabitant. The following day, Hawk allegedly went to a random home in the 12700 block of Burbank Boulevard in Valley Village while wielding a hatchet. According to the LAPD, he entered the strangers' residence while searching for his girlfriend. The homeowners and their children were home at the time and were shaken by the intrusion but unharmed, investigators said.

Woman Pleads Not Guilty To Beating, Torturing 4-Year-Old Daughter To Death
A South Los Angeles woman pleaded not guilty Wednesday to murder and other counts stemming from her 4-year-old daughter’s death last month. Akira Smith, 34, is accused of fatally beating her daughter at their home on Aug. 11. She is charged with one count each of murder, torture and assault on a child causing death. The girl, named Eternity, was pronounced dead at 7:41 a.m. after she was taken to the hospital by ambulance. Smith was arrested at 2:30 a.m. the following day by the LAPD’s Juvenile Division and has remained behind bars since then, jail records show. According to the criminal complaint, Smith was convicted in 2016 of assault with a deadly weapon and in 2014 of injuring a spouse, cohabitant, fiance or boyfriend.

Man Sentenced To 5 Years Probation After Pleading To Assaulting 2 Women At CSUN
A 28-year-old man was sentenced to five years probation after pleading no contest to assaulting two women at Cal State University Northridge in 2018, officials announced Wednesday. One of the incidents was caught on video. Peter Wei, of Northridge, pleaded to two felony counts of sexual battery by restraint, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office. He was immediately sentenced to five years of probation and five years state prison suspended. He was also ordered to complete a year in a residential mental health program, wear a GPS monitoring device for a year and register as a sex offender for the rest of his life. “The suspended sentence may be imposed if the defendant violates the terms of his probation,” according to a news release from the DA’s office.

Prosecutors begin dismissing felony cases involving LAPD officers accused in gang-framing scandal
Prosecutors have begun dismissing felony cases that relied on the work of Los Angeles police officers charged this summer with falsifying records and obstructing justice by claiming without evidence that people they stopped were gang members. So far, at least seven cases have been dismissed or recommended for dismissal and another seven are being scrutinized for potential dismissal, according to the L.A. County district attorney’s office.

Violent North Hollywood Wreck Knocks Engine Out Of Car, Several Flee
Authorities are looking for several people who ran from the scene after the speeding BMW they were riding in caused a violent collision in North Hollywood early Thursday morning, leaving debris strewn across the road. At about 3:45 a.m., the BMW was speeding in the area of Burbank Boulevard and Colfax Avenue when it slammed into a silver car, Los Angeles police said. The impact was so strong that it knocked engine out of the second car. The collision also sheared a power pole into a tree and also damaged several parked cars. The three male occupants of the BMW ran away and remain at large, police said. Its unclear if the innocent driver of the silver car was seriously hurt. L.A. Department of Water and Power crews were working to remove the power pole and replace it.

Man Arrested With ARP5 Assault Rifle In June Pleads Not Guilty
Arraignment was postponed Wednesday to Oct. 8 for a Gardena man who was arrested in downtown Los Angeles in June while allegedly carrying an assault rifle and handgun that he said he planned to use to protect a friend’s business during a police protest. Gregory Wong, 31, was charged Monday with a felony count of possession of an ARP5 assault weapon. About 1:30 a.m. on June 2, a National Guard member alerted police after spotting a man dressed in combat attire that resembled a National Guard uniform near the intersection of First Street and Main streets, where protesters had gathered, according to authorities. When questioned by officers, Wong allegedly said he was headed downtown to provide security for a friend’s establishment.

$10,000 Reward Offered In Fatal Florence-Firestone Shooting Of 14-Year-Old Boy
Authorities Wednesday renewed their call for public help in apprehending the killer of a 14-year-old boy who was shot on his way to a market in the Florence-Firestone area. The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors has authorized a $10,000 reward for information in the slaying of Otis Rayjon Williams, who was gunned down while walking alone in an alley just south of 98th Street between Central and Pace avenues around 8:40 p.m. July 3. The driver of a Dodge Challenger stopped at the beginning of the alley and fired 11 to 12 shots at the boy, striking him multiple times. The shooter sped off westbound on 98th Street, then turned north onto South Central Avenue and out of view. The suspect vehicle is a blue 2015 to 2018 Challenger with a black stripe on the hood between two air vents, a black roof top, rear spoiler and no front plates.

Deputies And Family Are Looking For Homeless Man Who May Be Living In Downtown LA
Authorities continued their search Wednesday for a 36-year-old homeless man who hasn’t contacted his family since February. Jesus Armando Jurado was last in touch with them on Feb. 29, and his family believes he may be living in downtown Los Angeles, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. Jurado is Hispanic, 5-foot-6 and 215 pounds. He has a bald head and brown eyes, the sheriff’s department reported. He has a tattoo of a woman with “Guadalupe Rodriguez Velarde” written under her on his left forearm, a tattoo of Texas on his right leg and a tattoo of a woman wearing a hat with “Irma” written under her on his right upper arm, according to the department. Authorities circulated photos of Jurado and urged anyone with information about his whereabouts to contact 323-890-5500 or 911. Tipsters can call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS.

Man Arrested For Alleged Murder Of Missing Person Whose Remains Were Found
A 54-year-old Long Beach man was arrested Monday on suspicion of killing a man who went missing in 2017 and whose remains were found the following year on his Long Beach property. Zachary Kennedy, 32, was reported missing in October 2017, and during an investigation into his disappearance, detectives suspected that he was buried at a residence in the 500 block of West Eighth Street, near Magnolia Avenue, where he was last seen, according to the Long Beach Police Department. A search warrant was served on May 3, 2018, and detectives excavated Kennedy’s remains, police said. The cause of death was not released. Scott David Leo, who lived at the residence, was arrested Monday at that same residence, according to police. 

College Admissions Scandal: 2 Coaches, Including Ex-USC Water Polo Coach, Hit With More Charges
Two coaches previously charged in the college admissions scam are facing more allegations in a third indictment filed against them Tuesday in federal court in Massachusetts. A jury indicted former Georgetown University tennis coach Gordon Ernst on three new counts of federal programs bribery and three counts of filing false tax returns for allegedly soliciting and receiving bribes from three more prospective Georgetown applicants. Ernst also failed to report a significant portion of those bribe payments on his federal income tax returns, according to a U.S. Attorney’s Office press release. Ernst was previously charged with several fraud charges for accepting bribes from William “Rick” Singer, the mastermind of the scheme who has pleaded guilty and is cooperating with the federal investigation.

Don’t Drive Drunk Or CHP Will Get You This Labor Day Weekend
California Highway Patrol officers will be ramping up operations on highways and roads throughout Los Angeles, Riverside and other Southern California counties starting Friday to catch drunken and drug-impaired drivers, as well as other traffic violators, as part of a Labor Day weekend enforcement campaign. The CHP’s “maximum enforcement period” will begin at 6 p.m. Friday and will conclude at 11:59 p.m. Monday. All available officers from the Beaumont, Blythe, Indio, Riverside and Temecula stations will deploy for targeted crackdowns, though officials acknowledged that this holiday weekend probably won’t compare to previous ones because more people are staying home and off of the roads due to coronavirus-related closures. During the 2019 Labor Day weekend MEP, CHP officers statewide arrested 1,078 motorists on suspicion of driving under the influence, compared to 1,084 from the same period in 2018. Forty-five people died in wrecks throughout California over Labor Day weekend 2019, according to the agency.

Mass Shootings Are Soaring, With Black Neighborhoods Hit Hardest
This summer’s Rye Day celebration in Syracuse, New York, almost ended — as it had the past 14 years — without a hitch. The event, a public birthday party hosted by a local business owner and philanthropist, drew hundreds of residents to an outdoor performance space on June 20 on the city’s Near West Side, where they ate and drank, registered to vote, and escaped the various pressures of the pandemic. But then a scuffle broke out. A Facebook Live stream shows a girl dancing, then noticing the commotion. “It’s a fight,” someone remarks, off camera. “Time to go.” The girl in the video agrees, playfully, but her concern escalates. The music stops. People scream. The crowd scatters, and the video turns into a whir of bodies and grass. Seconds later, more than a dozen gunshots ring out. “It was chaos,” said Nitch Jones, a local youth pastor who was at the center of the crowd. “You had wounded individuals, wounded friends, family members, associates on the ground, all crying out for help. People experiencing someone who looks like they’re dead. People experiencing trauma for the first time.” 

Public Safety News

Missing LA Firefighter Possibly A Victim Of ‘Violent Kidnapping’ In Mexico
A veteran Los Angeles city firefighter who went missing in Baja California last month may have been the victim of a “violent kidnapping,” Mayor Eric Garcetti said Wednesday. Garcetti said he was largely reacting to news reports in which Baja California’s head prosecutor, Hiram Sanchez, told members of the media that Francisco “Frank” Aguilar, 48, may have been “forcibly taken” from his condo. Speaking at a news conference, Garcetti added that he would offer resources to authorities in the U.S. and Mexico. The FBI is assisting Mexican law enforcement officials in their investigation into the disappearance of Aguilar. “We will work tirelessly to make sure Frank is returned safely,” Garcetti said. “This is somebody who has put his life on the line for us, and we will do everything in our power … to ensure that law enforcement in Mexico has whatever support it needs.”

Los Angeles County, City To Allow Hair Salons, Barbershops To Reopen Indoor Operations At 25% Capacity
Los Angeles County officials announced that they would be allowing hair salons and barbershops to reopen indoor operations at 25% capacity, following new state guidelines allowing such operations to resume with limitations to lower the risk of coronavirus spread. County Supervisor Janice Hahn broke the news Wednesday morning on Twitter, stating that options for increasing capacity will be re-evaluated three weeks after Labor Day. Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said the city will be following in the steps of the county and allowing salons and barbershops to reopen immediately at 25% capacity. While the state released overall guidance on Friday, individual counties are allowed to maintain tougher restrictions, should they choose to do so. County health officials have been hesitant to move too quickly with new business reopenings, fearing a repeat of COVID-19 increases that followed the earlier lifting of restrictions.

Los Angeles Opens Up Free Mobile COVID-19 Testing Sites Across City
The city of L.A. is opening up free mobile coronavirus testing sites starting Wednesday, Mayor Eric Garcetti said. No appointments will be required at the locations and testing will be available on various days through the month of September. Garcetti has touted the city’s testing efforts since the early days of the coronavirus pandemic, partnering up with actor Sean Penn to open up the county’s largest testing site at Dodger Stadium. Visit for more information about the new sites.

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: