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

April 19, 2021
Law Enforcement News

LAPD Sergeant Dies Of COVID-19 Complications
The Los Angeles Police Department announced Friday that a 31-year-veteran of the force died of COVID-19 complications, becoming the department's seventh sworn employee to die of the virus. Sgt. Anthony White, who had worked for the LAPD since 1990, died on Thursday at the age of 54. His most recent assignment was at the Transit Services Division. Before that, he worked at the Hollenbeck, Southwest, Internal Affairs and Transit Services divisions, according to the Los Angeles Police Protective League's Dustin DeRollo. He leaves behind a wife, two teenage children, his parents and two sisters, DeRollo said. The Los Angeles Police Protective League mourned White's death in a Twitter posting, which read: "He protected our city for over 30 years. Our prayers are with Sgt. White's family, friends and co-workers during their time of sadness." The department had previously lost six sworn and two civilian employees to the virus since the start of the pandemic, a number that had gone unchanged since February.

Woman, Girl Shot At Birthday Party In South L.A.
A gunman opened fire on a birthday party Sunday in South Los Angeles that hospitalized a 37-year-old woman and 12-year-old girl. The shooting happened about 7 p.m. near 74th Street and Hobart Boulevard, Los Angeles police Sgt. Rick Rodgers told City News Service. Both victims were taken to a hospital and were listed in stable condition, Rodgers said. According to Rodgers, a car pulled up, a gunman got out and opened fire on the party. A motive for the attack was unknown. Police had no immediate description of the shooter or the car, he said. Anyone with information on this shooting was asked to call the LAPD's 77th Street Division at 323-786-5077.

Street Gang Allegedly Using Los Feliz Homeless Encampment As Front To Deal Drugs
Residents of a Los Feliz neighborhood say what began as a homeless encampment more than a year ago has been transformed into a street gang-run drug distribution center. The collection of tents and tarps sits near the intersection of Berendo Street and Hollywood Boulevard, an area that is now covered with gang graffiti. Over the past year residents have documented the drug deals, the arrests, even the gunfire, consistently reporting the problems to the Los Angeles Police Department and Councilmember Nithya Raman's office. But the encampment and gang members still persist. "A couple of shots rang out one evening," explained a neighborhood resident. "If a stray bullet goes up the street, and hits somebody I know, or hits me or hits my wife, you know, it's just a sad story. But it is reality. It can happen." Entering the makeshift homes, though, is not as easy as it seems for law enforcement officers. They tell us current law requires officers to obtain a search warrant. LAPD's senior lead officer on this particular case confirms to Eyewitness News that the encampment is run by a street gang, the La Mirada Locos. At the site, officers have confiscated handguns, narcotics and "wads of money." 

Hate Crimes Against Asian Americans In L.A. More Than Doubled Last Year, LAPD Reports
The Los Angeles Police Department documented 15 hate crimes against Asian Americans in 2020, more than double the previous year, according to a new study by the agency. The findings were included in a report submitted to the Police Commission this week that analyzed hate crimes and hate incidents against the Asian American and Pacific Islander community in L.A. last year. Seven hate crimes were reported against Asian Americans in 2019 and nine the previous year. The 15 hate crimes against Asian Americans last year accounted for 4.2% of 355 total hate crimes reported in 2020 and 8.1% of all hate crimes related to race, according to the report. Of the hate crimes reported, nine were classified as battery, five as criminal threats or aggravated assault and one as a bomb threat made in an email to the Japanese American National Museum, according to the LAPD report. Suspects have not been identified in nine cases. The city attorney's office declined to file charges in two cases due to insufficient evidence and is currently reviewing one case. The L.A. County district attorney's office also declined to file hate crime enhancements against a suspect facing other charges. And in two incidents, the victims, or in the case of a minor, their parents, declined to file charges. Officials also documented nine hate incidents, or reports of actual or perceived bias that don't rise to the level of crimes, against Asian Americans. Those accounted for 4.5% of 199 total hate incidents reported last year and 8% of all hate incidents related to race.
Los Angeles Times

Police Seek Assistance To Locate 45-Year-Old Man Last Seen In Griffith Park
Police sought the public's help Friday to find a 45-year-old man last seen driving in Griffith Park. Valentin Broeksmit was last seen at about 4 p.m. on April 6 driving a red Mini Cooper on Riverside Drive in Griffith Park, according to the Los Angeles Police Department. The car was recovered but Broeksmit was not found. Broeksmit is white, 6 feet, 1 inch tall, weighs about 200 pounds, with brown hair and blue eyes. Anyone with information about his whereabouts was asked to call the LAPD's Missing Persons Unit at 213-996-1800. Calls made during non-business hours or on weekends should be made to 877-527-3247. Anonymous tips can be called in to Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477 or submitted online at

Inmate Who Walked Away From Reentry Program In L.A. Apprehended
A 35-year-old inmate who walked away from a Male Community Reentry Program facility in Los Angeles early Saturday has been apprehended this evening in Palmdale. Michael Rogers was determined to have left the facility at 3745 S. Grand Ave. without authorization at 1:25 a.m., according to California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation officials. He was serving a five-year, eight-month sentence for vehicle theft as a second-striker and was scheduled for release in May, officials said. Rogers was taken into custody without incident at 6:18 p.m. in Palmdale, officials said. He will be held at California State Prison, Los Angeles County in Lancaster while the case is referred to the Los Angeles County District Attorney, officials said. It was the second time this week an inmate walked away from a reentry facility. Inmate Jaime Clara walked away from one of the three Male Community Reentry Program facilities in Los Angeles Wednesday but was found at a Gardena residence and taken into custody later that day.

L.A. County Sheriff's Detectives Investigating Three Separate Homicides
Los Angeles County sheriff's detectives are investigating three separate homicides that occurred Saturday night in Pico Rivera, near Los Angeles International Airport and in East Los Angeles. The first incident occurred in Pico Rivera about 6:30 p.m. in the 9000 block of Reichling Lane, Lt. Robert Westphal said. A man was standing near a vehicle, talking with its occupants, and as he began to walk away, the vehicle accelerated and struck the man, he said. The vehicle, believed to be a Suburban, continued down the street, then turned back around, Westphal said. The occupants took a look at the man and drove away. The victim, 30 years old, was pronounced dead at the scene. Deputies responded to the second killing about 7:30 p.m. in the 5400 block of West 117th Street southeast of LAX, Westphal said. A crowd of about 30 people had gathered in the street after attending a funeral when gunfire erupted, with one man shot several times in the lower torso, he said. The victim, whom authorities had yet to identify, was pronounced dead at the scene, Westphal said. The shooter was believed to be a member of the crowd, Westphal said.
Los Angeles Times

3 Wounded In Shooting After Argument At East L.A. Bar
Deputies are searching for a man who shot and wounded three people after an argument at Rudy's LA bar in East Los Angeles early Sunday morning. The shooting was reported just before 1:30 a.m. in the 5200 block of Pomona Boulevard, according to an LASD spokesperson. Three victims, all described as being male, were wounded when gunfire erupted following an argument at the bar, officials said. One of the victims was listed in critical but stable condition. The other two suffered injuries that were not life-threatening. The suspect sought was described as being between 20 to 30 years old. The case remains under investigation and no further details were immediately available.

California Mass Shooting Suspect Was Barred From Buying Guns
The man accused of going on a shooting rampage at a Southern California business, killing four people, should not have been allowed to buy or own guns because of a California law that prohibits people from purchasing weapons for 10 years after being convicted of a crime. Aminadab Gaxiola Gonzalez was convicted of battery in 2015, which should have kept him from possessing or buying guns or ammo at stores that conduct background checks. While it's unclear how the shooter, 44, acquired the weapons used in the March 31 shooting, the tragedy raises concerns over California's ability to enforce strict gun control laws, the Sacramento Bee reported on Friday. Police say he targeted Unified Homes, the mobile home brokerage company in Orange, and had personal and business relationships with the victims. His estranged wife had worked in the business for more than 10 years as a broker assistant. The shooting occurred nearly six years after he pleaded guilty to misdemeanor battery, which should have put him on the list prohibiting him from owning firearms for the next 10 years.

After Deadly Year On The Roads, California And Other States Push For Safety Over Speed
As more Americans start commuting to work and hitting the roads after a year indoors, they'll be returning to more deadlier streets. Last year, an estimated 42,000 people died in motor vehicle crashes and 4.8 million were injured. That represents an 8% increase over 2019, the largest year-over-year increase in nearly a century — even though the number of miles driven fell by 13%, according to the National Safety Council. The COVID-19 pandemic caused roads to empty out, prompting more drivers to speed, leading to more fatalities, said Leah Shahum, executive director of the Vision Zero Network, a nonprofit organization that works on reducing traffic deaths. Ironically, congested traffic, the bane of car commuters everywhere, had been keeping people safer before the pandemic, Shahum said. “This is a nationwide public health crisis,” said California Assemblywoman Laura Friedman, a Democrat from Glendale, who introduced a bill this year to reduce speed limits. “If we had 42,000 people dying every year in plane crashes, we would do a lot more about it, and yet we seem to have accepted this as collateral damage.” California and other states are grappling with how to reduce traffic deaths, a problem that has worsened over the past 10 years but gained urgency since the onset of the pandemic. Lawmakers from coast to coast have introduced dozens of bills to lower speed limits, set up speed camera programs and promote pedestrian safety.
Los Angeles Times

CHP Officers To Step Up Anti-Drugged Driving Enforcement 
CHP officers in southwest Riverside County and elsewhere will be ramping up anti-drugged driving patrols next week to snare cannabis users who celebrate the unofficial marijuana “holiday” of 4/20, by getting high and driving. “Alcohol is not the only substance that can lead to an arrest for driving under the influence,” said CHP Officer Mike Lassig, spokesman for the agency's Temecula-area station. “Cannabis, prescription drugs and illegal drugs all can impair driving. Driving is a complex task, and any drug can slow reaction time.” Increased patrols are planned all day Tuesday, Lassig said. The date, April 20, has become synonymous with recreational marijuana-based drug use and is commonly referred to as either “four-twenty” or “Weed Day.” The Grateful Dead helped popularize the phrase. The annual celebration has become more widespread with the legalization of marijuana in California and other states.

Public Safety News

Baby Rescued From Deadly Cliffside Crash In Tujunga Canyon
A cliffside crash in Tujunga Canyon left one person dead and three others injured, including a baby. Emergency crews responded to a call near Big Tujunga Canyon Road and North Trail Canyon Road around 6:45 p.m. One person, an adult, was killed on scene and two adults and a baby were airlifted to the hospital. The vehicle fell 100 feet, prompting a six-hour closure of the road. The deceased woman was identified as Dolores Palmerin, 46, of Santa Barbara according to Lt. David Smith of the Los Angeles County coroner's office. The vehicle went over the side of Big Tujunga Canyon Road in the Angeles National Forest north of Altadena at 6:45 p.m. Friday, according to the Los Angeles County Fire Department. Palmerin was pronounced dead at the scene.
FOX 11

L.A. County Sees Lowest Coronavirus Daily Test Positivity Rate Since Pandemic Began
Los Angeles County public health officials on Saturday reported 527 new coronavirus cases and 29 related deaths, noting that the daily test positivity rate of 0.9% is the lowest since the pandemic began more than a year ago. The daily positivity rate is defined as the percentage of all coronavirus tests reported that are positive, officials said. Not all individuals who have the virus get the test. Though officials are encouraged by the steady decline in daily cases and transmission of the virus, as well as increased vaccinations, they caution residents to be vigilant against new variants of the virus by adhering to safety protocols such as wearing face masks and social distancing. “As the weather gets warmer and we go out to enjoy all what our beautiful county has to offer, let's keep up with the straightforward safety measures that have reduced transmission,” said L.A. County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer in a statement. “When we get vaccinated, wear face coverings, keep our distance, and implement safeguards at workplaces, our actions minimize transmission and prevent severe health outcomes.”

Nearly A Third Of Californians Are Fully Vaccinated. Half Have Had At Least One Shot
More than half of California adults have received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccination, and nearly a third are fully vaccinated, according to the state's health agency. The California Department of Public Health's most recent data shows 10.1 million people, 31.4% of the adult population, are fully vaccinated. Another 6.5 million have received one shot of the two-dose Pfizer or Moderna vaccines. Johnson & Johnson vaccines — the use of which was recently paused in California due to an extremely rare blood clotting issue experienced in six patients out of more than 7 million — only requires one shot. The number of partially vaccinated adults in California still awaiting their second shot accounts for 20.1% of the total adult population. Combined, that means 51.5% of California adults have gotten at least one shot. California's progress in rolling out the vaccine is roughly in line with national trends. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced on Sunday that 50.4% of all adults in the country have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, while 32.5% are fully vaccinated. Another 17.9% of Americans are still waiting to get their second shot.
Sacramento Bee

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: