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

December 22, 2020
Law Enforcement News

Shooting Stalls Traffic In Boyle Heights On 101 Freeway
One person was shot in Boyle Heights on Monday night, impacting traffic on the northbound 101 Freeway. The incident happened around 8 p.m. near the Fourth Street offramp of the freeway. The shooting investigation blocked at least one lane. Initial reports indicate one person died in the incident, but police have not yet revealed much more information about what happened. No motive was immediately disclosed. Police are investigating.

LAPD Seeking Public Help To Find Woman Who Went Missing In Venice Area
Authorities Monday circulated a photo of a woman who went missing in the Venice area two weeks ago. Story Kolby, 32, was last seen on Dec. 7 in the 12300 block of Pacific Avenue, the Los Angeles Police Department reported. “Her family is extremely concerned for her safety,” according to an LAPD statement. Kolby is white, 5 feet 4 inches tall, weighs 115 pounds, and has brown hair and hazel eyes. Anyone with information on her whereabouts was urged to call the LAPD missing persons office at 213-996-1800; 877-LAPD-247; or Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS.

1 Killed, 1 Injured In East Los Angeles Shooting; Investigation Ongoing
A man was killed and another person wounded in an East Los Angeles shooting on Monday night. The incident happened around 5:30 p.m. in the 5600 block of Via Corona Avenue near East Beverly Boulevard. Two victims were found suffering from gunshot wounds, said LASD Deputy Morgan Arteaga. One of them was pronounced dead at the scene and the other was taken to a hospital for surgery, according to officials. It’s unclear what led up to the shooting or the victims’ relationship to the shooter, whose identity is unknown. An investigation is ongoing. Anyone with details about the shooting is asked to call the homicide bureau of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department at 323-890-5500 or submit a tip anonymously at 1-800-222-8477.

67 Arrested After Sheriff’s Officials Break Up Party In Compton; Deputies Respond To 2 Other ‘Super-Spreader’ Events
More than 60 people were arrested after Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department officials broke up a party in Compton over the weekend, officials announced Monday. Authorities responded to the underground event at 1916 East Rosecrans Avenue about 12:30 a.m. Sunday and 67 people, including six juveniles, were arrested. Most of the attendees arrested were cited with misdemeanors, but one person was found to be in possession of a firearm. In addition, officials found evidence of the illegal use of nitrous oxide, according to a Sheriff’s Department news release. Photos released by the agency Monday showed dozens of masked people sitting on a sidewalk while many were processed by officials. Authorities did not elaborate on the event or those arrested, but indicated the human trafficking task force as well as the operation safe streets, fraud and cyber crime and aero bureaus responded. Officials also responded to two other incidents over the weekend that they described as being “super-spreader” events.

Armed Man Arrested For Allegedly Stealing Clothes From Glendale Store
A 28-year-old man on probation and armed with a gun is due in court Tuesday after he was arrested for allegedly stealing clothes from a store in the Glendale Galleria, then running off and struggling with officers before being taken into custody. Police responded at about 2:45 p.m. Friday to a business at the Galleria regarding a man who appeared to be preparing to do a “grab and run” type theft, according to the Glendale Police Department. The suspect was seen going into a fitting room with clothes, then leaving the dressing room wearing some of the merchandise and exiting the store without paying for the items. Officers tried to detain the suspect as he left the store, but he ran off and when officers caught up to him, and a struggle ensued before he was handcuffed, the department said. Once in custody, a search of the suspect turned up a loaded handgun, a pair of bolt cutters, a plastic baggy of heroin and a methamphetamine pipe, police said.

4 Arrested In Alleged Funeral Donations Scam In Glendale
Two adults and two juveniles were arrested in Glendale on suspicion of soliciting money under false pretenses after three of the suspects gave officers conflicting stories about the death of their father, authorities said Tuesday. One of the adults was allegedly armed with a gun. Officers spotted two people Friday in the area of Central Avenue and Broadway holding a sign that indicated they were collecting money for funeral costs “In Loving Memory of Bernard Jaymes,” according to a statement from the Glendale Police Department. They were approaching vehicles while holding large water jugs of cash and soliciting drivers for donations, police said. Officers also saw three other people at different parts of the same intersection holding signs and collecting donations, all of whom quickly left the intersection once officers began talking with two of the individuals, the police statement said.
LA City Attorney Warns Of DUI Consequences As Hospital Beds Become Scarce  
City Attorney Mike Feuer warned Monday of the consequences of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, noting it's especially dangerous now with local hospital beds filling up with COVID-19 patients. Feuer said that with the limited number of hospital beds and intensive care unit expertise available amid surging coronavirus caseloads, people who are seriously injured in crashes as a result of driving under the influence may have trouble getting medical help. “Even with the Safer at Home orders and bars and restaurants closed at night and nightclubs shut down, driving under the influence cases still are much too numerous in my office,'' he said. “Just this year alone, my office has prosecuted more than 5,000 drivers; 4,600 of those were tied to alcohol.” The city attorney said his office has filed about 300 criminal complaints against drivers convicted of a DUI who did not install an interlock device in their car as required. He said data has shown the interlock system reduces drunk or drugged driving.

More Than 10% Of Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Personnel In Coronavirus Quarantine
More than 10% of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s employees are in quarantine due to the coronavirus, a number officials attributed to the explosion of cases throughout the county. As of Monday, 655 non-sworn and 1,216 sworn personnel were in quarantine after having tested positive or having had a confirmed exposure, according to department data. The department has about 17,500 employees, according to spokesman Lt. John Satterfield. Of those, more than 10,100 are sworn personnel, according to data from early September. In response, officials have staggered schedules, hired extra staff and encouraged strategies to limit transmission, such as mask wearing, hand washing and social distancing, Satterfield said, adding: “I believe it is a reflection of what is occurring in the community.” Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Police Department has also been dealing with the virus’ impact on its ranks. During a Dec. 15 meeting of the Police Commission, LAPD Chief Michel Moore said his department was continuing to struggle with a large number of employees testing positive and having to quarantine or isolate. In the week before the meeting, 156 personnel had tested positive, he said, bringing the total number of positive tests in the department, which has about 13,000 employees, to more than 1,200. Moore had said 408 employees were still at home, and 751 had recovered.

Fentanyl Bill Reintroduced In California Legislature As Overdose Deaths Surge
They were as young as 14, 16, 18. Seeking celebration, relief, escape. Many were inexperienced users who thought they were taking OxyContin, or ecstasy, or cocaine, but were fooled by an even more lethal drug — fentanyl. It cost them their lives. Fentanyl is a cheap, synthetic opioid — 50 to 100 times stronger than morphine — that’s pouring into California over the Mexican border, masquerading as other drugs and leaving carnage in its wake. With overdose deaths related to fentanyl surging, state Sen. Pat Bates, R-Laguna Niguel re-introduced a bill on Dec. 15 that would task California’s Attorney General with getting a firmer handle on the problem and crafting coherent solutions. Modeled after an earlier legislative effort targeting methamphetamine, Senate Bill 75 would require the A.G.’s office to establish and chair a “Southern California Fentanyl Task Force” to enhance law enforcement agency coordination, recommend changes to the law and bring a state-wide caliber of expertise to the issue. It would cover the hard-hit counties of Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and San Diego.

A Historic Surge In Gun Violence Compounds The Traumas Of 2020
Janet Foster lost two children this year. One night in late July, she woke to the sound of gunfire outside her home on the East Side of Cleveland. She rushed out the door to find her 22- and 26-year-old sons lying in her neighbor’s driveway. They’d both been shot. She shouted for help, but none came. Her sons died before doctors could intervene. In the months that followed, Foster struggled to cope with her loss. “Some days I can’t do nothing but be locked up in my room because the pain is so severe,” she said. “I’ve been here eight years, and I’ve never seen violence so bad.” Foster’s sons, Delvonte and Domenique King, were among a record number of people killed in Cleveland this year, making the city one of dozens that battled sharp increases in gun deaths. From Oakland to Chicago to New York City, homicides and shootings crept toward — and sometimes exceeded — all-time highs. The sudden upswing reversed decades of progress, and provides a prism for the intersecting crises that characterized 2020. While researchers are still picking over the causes, the consequences of the violence are plain: Thousands of communities, families, and parents like Foster forced to manage terrible voids — and saddled with the knowledge that at any moment, more gunfire could tear open new ones.

Public Safety News

Heavy Fire Rips Through Canoga Park Apartment Unit
Fire ripped through an upstairs unit in a two-story apartment building early Tuesday morning in Canoga Park and spread to both floors. Firefighters responded at 1:52 a.m. to 21315 Roscoe Blvd., near Canoga Avenue, and found heavy fire coming one of the units, according to Margaret Stewart of the Los Angeles Fire Department. A total of 78 firefighters battled the flames, and a knockdown was called at 2:24 a.m., she said. No injuries were reported, and the cause of the fire was under investigation.

Cumulative LA County COVID-19 Cases Over 634K As Hospital Space Continues To Shrink
Los Angeles County continued to report worrisome COVID-19 numbers on Monday, with 56 additional deaths and 11,271 new daily cases, bringing the countywide totals to 634,849 cases and 8,931 fatalities. Local health officials say L.A. County is still in the worst surge of this pandemic, and a local trauma center struggling to make space for patients over the weekend was representative of the fears health officials have been expressing if Angelenos don’t take the warnings seriously. “If we don’t change how we experience the winter holidays, we’ll experience a surge on top of a surge on top of a surge,” said Public Health Director Dr. Barbara Ferrer in a Monday briefing. Hospital care is being compromised as frontline health care workers are also coping with coronavirus concerns. According to the county, as of Monday, there were 776 hospital beds available in the county and 30 adult ICU beds. Of the record 5,709 people with COVID-19 currently hospitalized, 21% of these people were in intensive care as of Monday.

SoCal’s Stay-At-Home ‘Very Likely’ To Be Extended Based On Current Trends, Newsom Says
The three-week regional stay-at-home order issued in Southern California will “very likely” be extended based on current coronavirus trends, Gov. Gavin Newsom said Monday. The order, implemented when the region’s intensive care unit capacity dropped below 15%, is set to expire on Dec. 28. “It’s very likely based on those current trends that we will need to extend that stay-at-home order,” Newsom said during a briefing Monday, which he held while quarantined following a possible coronavirus exposure. Dr. Mark Ghaly, California’s Health and Human Services secretary, said officials will be looking at current ICU capacity, the average number of new cases, transmission rate and projections on capacity based on those factors. He added that officials won’t make any decisions until the models are analyzed, but that it doesn’t look like Southern California or the San Joaquin Valley — also under the restrictions until Dec. 28 — will get out of the order once it expires. It’s unclear, however, how long a potential extension would last.

California Shatters Daily COVID-19 Record With More Than 62,000 New Cases As Hospital Conditions Worsen
California once again shattered a new daily record for most number of coronavirus in a single day on Monday, a troubling sign days before a Christmas holiday that officials fear could bring still greater spread of the virus. A county-by-county tally conducted by The Times for Monday found 62,661 new coronavirus cases reported — the most in a single day since Friday, when 53,326 coronavirus cases were reported. The state is now averaging nearly 45,000 new coronavirus cases a day over the past week — more than seven times the comparable figure from six weeks ago. The Times’ tally found 252 COVID-19 deaths across California Monday, which is the fifth-highest single-day death tally so far in the pandemic. California is now averaging 247 COVID-19 deaths every day over the past week, a new record and more than five times the comparable tally from six weeks ago. There are now 1.93 million confirmed coronavirus cases in California, and 22,928 COVID-19 deaths, according to The Times’ tally.

Suicide Prevention Hotlines See An Uptick In Calls During The COVID-19 Pandemic
Inland SOCAL United Way calls it the "HELPLINE," but the counselors answering phones 24 hours a day have become a real lifeline. "The calls have become more severe," said call center manager Jenn Carson. "We’ve gotten calls from people aged 10 to 90 who are suicidal. Just a week ago we actually helped a 10-year-old who was attempting suicide get to a hospital." Since the beginning of the year, the helpline has received more than 4,000 calls. The reasons for the uptick are many— from isolation to job losses, to the fear of the unknown. "It’s really the perfect storm of suffering right now," Carson said. Last June, Riverside County launched an ambitious effort and coalition to eliminate suicide and save lives, offering free training classes to anyone willing to help. "We’re not training therapists. We’re training moms and dads and pastors and coaches and teachers and neighbors and anyone that wants to help someone they love or care about who might be having thoughts of suicide," said Diana Brown, admin services manager with the Riverside University Health System.

Public Safety News

City Of LA, City Attorney Sued Over Handling Of LADWP Lawsuit
A man who sued the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power over inaccurate utility billings filed a lawsuit in federal court Monday against the city over the way in which the city attorney's office handled the case. Antwon Jones, who was a plaintiff in a settlement in 2017 when the DWP was forced to give refunds to customers after a massive billing snafu, claims that city officials used him as an "unwitting pawn" and conspired with Paradis Law Group, which he retained during the first lawsuit. The debacle prompted a class-action lawsuit that led to a settlement requiring the DWP to reimburse customers about $67 million. The billing system in 2013 led to thousands of customers receiving inaccurate bills, with some being wildly overcharged. In the new suit, filed in Los Angeles, lawyers for Jones accuse the city of Los Angeles, City Attorney Mike Feuer and two lawyers from Feuer's office -- James Clark and Thomas Peters -- of conducting "an egregious scheme and cover-up which defrauded Jones, violated his civil rights, and wasted city funds." Feuer said he hadn't yet reviewed the entire complaint, "but it just appears to be a rehash of old allegations. I can say unequivocally that I have always acted with complete integrity, and any allegation to the contrary is absolutely false. Period." 

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: