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 14, 2021
Law Enforcement News

Leimert Park Double Shooting Leaves One Man Dead, Second Wounded
One man was killed and a second was wounded in a shooting in South Los Angeles early Wednesday morning. The two victims were found in a car with gunshot wounds just before 1:30 a.m. in the area of West 43rd Street and Crenshaw Boulevard in Leimert Park, Los Angeles police said. Both were rushed to hospitals, where one man was pronounced dead. The second was in critical condition. The men were described as between 25 and 30 years of age. No names were released. There was no word on a motive or whether the shooting was gang-related. No arrests have been made.

LA City Clerk Approves Draft Of Petition To Recall Councilman Mike Bonin
A petition for the recall of Councilmember Mike Bonin is approved for circulation, the Los Angeles Office of the City Clerk announced today. Bonin serves as Councilmember for CD11, which represents Venice and other Westside neighborhoods. Under Los Angeles' recall rules, constituents are able to sign petitions to recall council members starting four weeks after the notices were served. To get the recall effort on the ballot, campaigns have 120 days to obtain verified signatures from 15% of the districts' registered voters. The petition's deadline is Nov. 10 for Bonin's recall and it needs at least 27,387 signatures from qualified registered voters in his district. Today's approval comes on the heels of approving a draft of petition to recall Councilwoman Nithya Raman. That petition was approved last Friday. Leading up to the recall effort, Bonin faced increased backlash from constituents since introducing a motion to have the city explore housing homeless people in temporary cabins and safe camping sites on beach parking lots, including one at Will Rogers State Beach. More than 31,000 opponents of the motion signed a  petition against creating camping sites and tiny home sites in Westside beaches and parks.
Venice Current

Man's Conviction Upheld For Fatally Stabbing Acquaintance During Fight
A state appeals court panel Tuesday upheld a man's conviction for fatally stabbing an acquaintance during a fight outside a South Los Angeles fast-food restaurant. The three-justice panel from California's 2nd District Court of Appeal rejected the defense's contention that there was insufficient evidence to support David Carrillo's second-degree murder conviction for the Feb. 10, 2015, killing of Wesley Morejon, 30, outside the Monster Burger restaurant in the 8900 block of Vermont Avenue. The appellate court justices found that there was “sufficient evidence from which the jury could conclude Carrillo was not acting in a heat of passion or self-defense.” Carrillo testified in his own defense that the two men were in the same therapy program across the street from the restaurant, that Morejon would occasionally bump him as they walked past one another and that Morejon would try to instigate a fight, according to the appellate court panel's opinion. The panel noted that surveillance video — contrary to the defendant's testimony — showed that Carrillo was the initial aggressor.

87-Year-Old Lowell Duke Located After Going Missing In Venice Area
Authorities were requesting the public's help in locating a missing elderly man, who was located on Tuesday, according to the California Highway Patrol. A Silver Alert was issued for 87-year-old Lowell Duke. Duke was last seen at about 2 p.m. Monday in the area of West Washington Boulevard and Beach Avenue in the Venice area, the CHP said. Duke was described as White, 6' tall, and weighing about 160 pounds, with gray balding hair and brown eyes. He was last seen wearing a brown sweatshirt, blue jeans, black shoes and a black wristband with family contact information on it. Anyone who saw him was urged to call 911. The CHP announced Tuesday afternoon that Duke had been found. No further details were released.

Reward In 2009 Inglewood Shooting Of Preschool Teacher Now Totals $35,000
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors offered or renewed $10,000 rewards Tuesday for information leading to the killers of a 24-year-old preschool teacher sitting in a parked car in Inglewood in 2009 and a 53-year-old father of three shot to death in the backyard of his Windsor Hills home in 2019. Supervisor Holly Mitchell recommended the reward in the case of Crystal Crawford, a Los Angeles resident killed on May 31, 2009. In 2019, Inglewood approved a $25,000 reward so the reward money now totals $35,000. Around 10:30 p.m. that night, Crawford and three friends were sitting in a car parked in a residential neighborhood near 95th Street and Eighth Avenue when another car pulled up alongside. Someone inside the second car shouted something and then opened fire before speeding away. Crawford's boyfriend drove her to Centinela Hospital, where she died the following morning. Anyone with additional information on the killing was urged to call Inglewood Police Department Detective Michael Oppelt at 310-412-8683.

Pedestrian Seriously Injured In Glendale Hit-And-Run
Authorities Tuesday were searching for a suspect's vehicle in a hit-and-run in Glendale that left a pedestrian seriously injured. The vehicle was traveling westbound on Glenoaks Boulevard and turned onto North Pacific Avenue, where it struck the pedestrian at about 12:25 a.m. Friday, according to a Glendale Police Department statement. The victim was taken to a hospital by paramedics, police said. The vehicle fled the scene traveling northbound on North Pacific Avenue. It was described as a white 2017 or 2018 Nissan Altima with tinted windows, a missing passenger side window and damage to the right side of its front bumper. Anyone with information on the vehicle or the crash was asked to contact Glendale police at 818-548-4911.

Jury Selected In Trial Of West Hollywood Political Donor Ed Buck
A jury of seven women and five men was sworn in Tuesday for the federal criminal trial of former political donor Ed Buck, who is accused of providing methamphetamine to two men who overdosed and died in his West Hollywood apartment. The panel, along with three female alternates, was chosen after a daylong process in which some of the 50 prospective jurors were brought to tears when questioned about sensitive topics such as drug use among family members and close friends. Others told of personal tragedies or encounters with law enforcement that left one man "bitter about the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department." When queries got too uncomfortable for public airing, U.S. District Judge Christina Snyder allowed responses to be provided in private behind closed doors. The pool reflected a cross-section of the region's population, taking in people ranging in age from their mid-20s to their late 60s.

2 Former Sherman Oaks Executives Plead Guilty To Role In $1.3 Billion Real Estate Fraud
Two more California men have pleaded guilty in South Florida for their roles in a $1.3 billion real estate fraud scheme that stole money from thousands of investors nationwide. Dane Roseman, 38, and Ivan Acevedo, 44, both of Los Angeles, pleaded guilty Monday in Miami federal court to participating in a massive investment fraud scheme, in which more than 7,000 victims suffered financial losses, according to court records. Co-defendant Robert Shapiro was previously sentenced to 25 years in prison for orchestrating the scheme. Roseman and Acevedo are scheduled to be sentenced on Sept. 20. Shapiro was the the former owner, president and CEO of the Sherman Oaks-based Woodbridge Group of Companies LLC. The company had offices employing 130 people in California, Florida, Tennessee, Colorado and Connecticut. Prosecutors say Shapiro told investors that Woodbridge held real estate loans that would pay them rates of interest between 5% and 10%. In fact, the real estate also was owned by Shapiro through 270 shell companies and did not generate the necessary money for investors. Sometimes, the properties didn't even exist. It became a Ponzi scheme that paid older investors with money from newer ones, court records show. Five states entered cease-and-desist orders because Woodbridge was selling unregistered securities.
Los Angeles Daily News

San Francisco Sees Double The Shootings In First Half Of 2021
San Francisco saw an increase in shootings in the first half of 2021 compared to the same period in 2020, and a slight uptick in aggravated assaults like those seen in viral videos that have drawn national attention, the city's police chief said Monday. But retail robberies have declined despite brazen thefts caught on video, Police Chief Bill Scott said. Scott said there were 119 shootings in the first half of the year, compared to 58 in 2020. The number includes both fatal and nonfatal shootings. “We're almost double where we were in the last two years, and that is a huge concern,” Scott said. The increase in shootings in San Francisco follows a trend in many major cities throughout the country. Shootings are up from the same period last year in Chicago; Los Angeles; Minneapolis; Portland, Oregon; Baltimore; Baton Rouge, Louisiana; and Houston.
Associated Press

Feds: California Suspects Used ‘Call Centers' To Sell Heroin From Mexico In Orange County
Two Southern California call centers that facilitated illegal drug deliveries distributed at least $2 million worth of heroin before a federal grand jury indicted 19 people in connection with the scheme, authorities said Tuesday. The 13-count federal indictment charges the defendants with offenses tied to narcotics and money laundering. Twelve of them are in custody and expected to be arraigned in federal court in  Santa Ana  on Tuesday. The remaining seven are being sought. Authorities say the suspects operated a heroin ring between March 2017 and this April in Orange County by obtaining the drugs from suppliers in the U.S. and Mexico. Drug mules brought the heroin, sometimes concealed in their bodies, to Southern California. Two brothers, Julio Cesar Martinez and Victor Martinez, organized the call centers and used two other defendants, Maricela Guerrero and Marla Portillo Cordova, to run the call centers and organize deliveries, according to the indictment. At one point, a defendant didn't mention that one of the call centers was closing early, even though more heroin was needed that day for customers. The suspects also are accused of depositing the money in different bank accounts to avoid federal reporting requirements, an offense that dates to 2013, officials said.
FOX 11

Kansas Officer Shot In Head Leaves Hospital, Transferred To Rehab Facility
A police officer who was shot in the line of duty last month and left in critical condition has been released from the hospital, according to KSNT. The officer, who hasn't been named, was shot in the head while responding to a call on June 19. The suspect, Tyler Hodge, was shot and killed by police. Wichita Police Chief Gordon Ramsay initially described the officer's injuries as serious, saying it would be a long road to recovery – if recovery was possible at all. On Monday, Ramsay shared that the officer was released from the hospital and transferred to a rehabilitation facility. “The outpouring of community support for this hero has been overwhelming, and we're very thankful for the progress he's made in his recovery so far,” Ramsay wrote on Twitter. Ramsay did not detail the extent of the officer's recovery. The department also organized a send-off motorcade for the officer. Video shows the officer giving two thumbs up as he leaves the hospital in a wheelchair.

2 Baltimore Officers On US Task Force Shot, Suspect Killed
Two Baltimore city police detectives were shot and a homicide suspect was killed as a U.S. Marshals' task force served a warrant outside a mall Tuesday morning, authorities said. Members of the warrant apprehension task force were looking for a vehicle and suspect wanted in a June 19 homicide in Baltimore and spotted them in the parking lot of Security Square Mall in Woodlawn, Baltimore Police Commissioner Michael Harrison said at a news conference. When officers tried to approach the vehicle, the suspect got out and fired, striking two detectives, he said. Officers returned fire, striking the suspect, a 32-year-old man, Harrison said. The man was taken to a hospital, where he died. The wounded detectives were taken to the University of Maryland Medical Center's shock trauma unit, where the physician-in-chief, Thomas Scalea, said “both were seriously ill when they arrived.” “We were able to get them stabilized,” he said. “Both will require some therapy. ... We expect both of them to survive.” Mayor Brandon Scott said he's thankful the officers were alert and upbeat and wished them a speedy recovery.
Associated Press

Public Safety News

L.A. County Reports 5th Straight Day Of More Than 1,000 Coronavirus Cases Amid Delta Variant Fears
Los Angeles County reported the fifth straight day of more than 1,000 new coronavirus cases and health officials warned Tuesday that the especially contagious delta variant of the disease continues to spread rapidly among California's unvaccinated population. The nation's most populous state reported 3,256 COVID-19 cases, the highest one-day total since early March. Los Angeles County, where a quarter of California's 40 million people live, reported a new caseload totaling 1,103. “One month ago, on June 13, the five-day average of cases was 201 and today the five-day average is 1,095,” the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health said in a statement. “This is an increase of more than 500% in just one month.” The statewide seven-day positivity rate is 2.7%, which is 50% higher than a week ago and at the highest point since late February, according to data from the California Department of Public Health. Officials expected a jump in cases when capacity limits were lifted for businesses and most mask restrictions and social distancing requirements were eliminated for vaccinated people in mid-June.

LA, Glendale Firefighters Head To Mariposa County To Help With River Fire
Firefighters from Los Angeles and Glendale have been deployed to Northern California to help battle the River Fire, burning since Sunday in Mariposa County. The strike team, which left late Monday, includes four engines from the Los Angeles Fire Department and one engine from the Glendale Fire Department. As of Tuesday night, the River Fire had burned 9,500 acres and was 15% contained. According to CalFire, five structures had been destroyed and mandatory evacuations were still in place for some residents in Madera County. According to LAFD, low humidity, tree torching, wind-driven runs with frequent spot fires and dangerous heat levels were continuing to challenge firefighters as they attempted to gain control of the blaze. 

LA County Calls For Study Of High-Rise Inspections Following Surfside Collapse
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Tuesday, July 13, to adopt a motion mandating engineering inspections for older high-rise buildings in the Marina del Rey area and calling for a study of similar reviews for all high-rises in unincorporated L.A. County. “The horrible tragedy that unfolded in Surfside, Florida, last month was a wake-up call for all of us,” said Supervisor Janice Hahn, the motion's author. “When word got out that happened, the first thought on people's minds was, could this happen here in L.A. County?” Hahn's motion calls for the county to study the feasibility of inspecting older towers and compile an inventory of how many aging towers exist in unincorporated L.A. County.
Los Angeles Daily News

Delta Variant's Spread Among Unvaccinated Californians Threatens New Surge Of COVID Cases, Officials Warn
With nearly half of California residents still not fully immunized against COVID-19 and the highly infectious delta variant in wide circulation, the state could be facing a surge up to two-thirds the size of last summer's wave of infection despite generally high vaccination rates, health officials said Tuesday. If such a surge materializes, it almost certainly will be far less deadly and disruptive than what the state endured over the winter, when more than 22,000 Californians died between Thanksgiving and the end of January and the state was largely shut down for several months. People who are not vaccinated are bearing the vast majority of disease burden, making up over 99% of hospitalizations and deaths, state officials said, and that trend is expected to continue. New cases have climbed slightly among the vaccinated over the past few weeks, and are now hovering just under 1 case a day per 100,000 vaccinated people. But they've spiked among those who are not vaccinated, from a low of roughly 3 cases a day per 100,000 unvaccinated people a month ago to about 5 cases per 100,000 currently.
San Francisco Chronicle

California Fires: Firefighters Gain Ground Against Biggest Northern California Blaze
Firefighters gained ground Tuesday in the battle against California's largest wildfire so far this season — the lightning-sparked Beckwourth Complex burning along the Nevada border northwest of Reno. The 93,000-acre blaze, a fusion of the Sugar and Dotta fires in Plumas and Lassen counties, is burning in chaparral, pine and other timber in the Plumas National Forest. But after surging in size over the weekend and crossing Highway 395, the 2,745 firefighters assigned to the fire stopped the blaze from growing Tuesday and extended containment lines to 66%. Some structures were destroyed in or near the town of Doyle, U.S. Forest Service officials said. Kimberly Kaschalk, a spokesperson for the U.S. Forest Service, said damage assessment crews have not been able to enter the area to get an accurate count or determine how many of the structures were houses, barns, sheds or trailers. Fire crews have established containment lines along the south edge and southwest corner of the fire.
San Francisco Chronicle

Number Of US Wildfires So Far In 2021 Largest In A Decade, Fire Center Data Says
The number of wildfires that have burned in the United States so far in 2021 is the largest in a decade, according to data from the National Interagency Fire Center. Between Jan. 1 and July 13, 2021, 33,953 wildfires have been recorded — the highest number since 2011 which saw 39,888 wildfires within the same timeframe. Currently, 67 large fires have burned through 917,954 acres across the U.S. and only three have been contained, according to the NIFC. The states that have the largest number of fires burning this week are Arizona and Idaho, with 13 fires each and Montana with 12. The states with the largest acres burned were Alaska with 113,803 acres, Arizona with 177,297 acres, California with 113,639 acres and Idaho with 108,592 acres. Oregon saw the largest acres burned at 223,496. The fires erupted as the West was in the grip of the second bout of dangerously high temperatures in just a few weeks.
FOX 11

Local Government News

L.A. County Approves More Than $500 Million In Homeless Spending
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors Tuesday approved $527.1 million in funding for strategies to battle homelessness in fiscal year 2021-22, while expressing frustration over the rising numbers of people living on the street. Despite the massive inflow of cash from Measure H and dozens of carefully crafted initiatives that make up the county's Homeless Initiative, visible encampments continue to grow and the situation on the street remains dire. Supervisor Kathryn Barger highlighted one sobering statistic, noting that 739 homeless people died in Los Angeles County in the first six months of 2021. That number, generated in response to Public Record Act requests from a KNX Newsradio reporter, amounts to a 20% increase over 2020 deaths. “This is a life-or-death situation, and it should encourage us to act with urgency and a new sense of direction,” Barger said. Efforts to count the homeless have been stymied by the pandemic and lockdown orders, but residents are growing increasingly vocal about massive encampments encroaching on public spaces countywide.

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: