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

August 5, 2021
Law Enforcement News

St. Louis Prosecutor Slammed For Rise In ‘No Prosecution' Felony Cases
Former LAPD chief Bill Bratton discusses how progressive district attorneys are affecting the criminal justice system.
FOX News

LAPD Announces Arrest Of Man Who Placed Molotov Cocktails On MTA Platform
On Wednesday, the Los Angeles Police Department announced an arrest in a possible threat to a Los Angeles MTA rail line. Frederick Brown was taken into custody on suspicion of being in possession of Molotov cocktails and pipe bombs. Authorities said that he admitted to placing the explosives at an MTA Redline platform near Vermont Avenue and Santa Monica Boulevard. Brown, according to police, was armed with a gun and wanted for a parole violation. So far, no motive has been established, but officials said that Brown told them he was being stalked by street gangs and was defending himself. The FBI is assisting in the investigation.

LAPD Backs Officers Who Pointed Guns At Homeless People On Venice Beach
The Los Angeles Police Department has backed the actions of officers who were filmed raising guns toward people at a homeless encampment in Venice on July 25, saying they were responding to reports of an armed man “threatening to shoot people.” In the video, officers can be seen handcuffing several people outside tents, and heard telling them to “go down to the ground.” At least eight officers appear in the video, which shows police inspecting tents after people are detained. The LAPD issued a statement on August 3 that said officers were responding to a radio call warning of a man with a deadly weapon. “Officers arrived, the witness pointed out the tent with the alleged male with a handgun and tactical deployed.” Police said they temporarily detained the man and found the alleged weapon to be a pellet gun, which is not illegal in California. Police said the suspect told them he had displayed the pellet to scare away a woman who had tried to steal his bike. 
Yahoo! News

LAPD's West Valley Community Police Host Annual National Night Out Gathering
Los Angeles Police Department's West Valley Community police hosted their annual National Night Out event on Tuesday evening, Aug. 3, at LAPD SWAT Officer Randall D. Simmons Park in Reseda, one of many such events around the region. Each year, National Night Out brings law enforcement officers, emergency personnel and the public together to learn about neighborhood safety, crime prevention tips, staying secure at home and creating neighborhood watch groups — while having fun in a relaxed atmosphere. In Reseda, community police officers and members of community councils and neighborhood watches got together for the evening. The event featured face painting, a petting zoo and a screening of the Disney movie “Onward.” Events were also hosted at other sites around the city of Los Angeles, as well as in Burbank, Glendale, Lakewood, Sylmar, West Hollywood and other communities. 
Los Angeles Daily News

Gunman Barricaded In RV In South LA Escapes Police A Wednesday morning standoff between police a suspected gunman in South Los Angeles ended with the suspect getting away. The shooting occurred at about 8:40 a.m. in the area of Gage Avenue and St. Andrews Place, according to Los Angeles police. Officers arrived to find a man wounded. The victim was taken to a hospital in unknown condition. The gunman then allegedly barricaded himself in a nearby RV, police said. The standoff was still ongoing as of 11 a.m. During the standoff, a car crashed into some RVs near where the suspect was barricaded. The car then caught fire. L.A. Fire Department crews responded and quickly extinguished the blaze. It's unclear if the crash was related to the standoff in any way. Police later searched each RV and could not find the suspected gunman. The victim and suspect are believed to be homeless, police said. The circumstances of the incident and a motive for the shooting were unclear.

LA City Council Renews Reward For Information On LADWP Worker's Killing
The City Council Wednesday reinstated a $50,000 reward for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of an unidentified assailant who gunned down a Los Angeles Department of Water and Power electrical worker in front of his home last summer. Akeem “AJ” Coburn was standing in his driveway near South Vermont Avenue and 135th Street in the Harbor Gateway neighborhood when a person approached and shot him on July 29 last year, Buscaino's office said. The suspect may have arrived in a dark-colored sedan. “AJ was a part of our city family and his death leaves a hole that can never be filled,” said Buscaino, who introduced the motion to reinstate the reward, which will be in effect for an additional six months. “If you have any information, we are begging you to please come forward, even anonymously, to help us solve this horrific and tragic crime,” the councilman said. LADWP Transmission and Distribution District Superintendent Vincent Casillas said Coburn was hard-working, ambitious, thoughtful and caring. People with information about the case are urged to contact South Bureau homicide investigators at 323-786-5111, or during weekends and non-business hours, 1-877-LAPD-24-7.

Street Racing Suspected In Horrific Burbank Crash That Left 3 Innocent People Dead
Three people were killed and two others were injured in a fiery multi-vehicle crash in Burbank late Tuesday night, officials said. Police said the three who lost their lives were innocent victims and street racing is suspected in the crash. First responders were called to the intersection of North Glenoaks Boulevard and Andover Drive just before midnight. When they arrived at the scene, they discovered three people, two men and a woman, had been ejected from a silver Volkswagen and were pronounced dead on scene. They were later identified by the coroner's office as Cerain Anthony Raekwon Baker, 21, from Pasadena, Jaiden Kishon Johnson, 20, from Burbank, Natalee Asal Moghaddam, 19, from Calabasas. "Speed is absolutely a factor in this case. The footage is going to provide us with details as far as exactly which direction, which vehicle was traveling, were any vehicles turning…but that is information we'll be getting shortly," said Sgt. Emil Brimway with the Burbank Police Department. 
FOX 11

Culver City Police Seeking Suspect In Jogger Assault
Culver City police sought public help Wednesday to find a bicyclist who assaulted a 17-year-old girl while she was jogging. The crime occurred at about 10 a.m. Friday near National Boulevard and Wesley Street, where the girl was running north on a bike path, according to the Culver City Police Department. “She noticed the suspect riding his bicycle behind her,” police said in a statement. “The suspect seemed to be intently watching her, while one of his hands was in his pants, possibly committing a lewd act. “The victim became scared and attempted to run away when she was hit in the head with an unknown object,” police continued. “The victim fell to the ground and momentarily lost consciousness. The victim regained consciousness and saw the suspect ride away north onto National Boulevard.” Police released security video of the suspect, described only as a male with short black hair and a thin build, who was riding a black bicycle with a red rear wheel. He wore a black sweatshirt and black camouflage sweatpants. Anyone with information on the case was urged to call police at 310-253-6391 or 310-253-6202.

Paul Haney Charged In Stabbing Death Of Employee At Burbank Retirement Home
A man who police say was recently fired from a retirement home in Burbank is set to be arraigned next month on a charge that he fatally stabbed a female employee. Paul Lawrence Dunbar Haney IV, 27, of San Fernando, is due in a Pasadena courtroom on Sept. 2 for arraignment on the murder charge, which includes an allegation that he personally used a knife during the attack last Friday. Authorities have not released the name of the 27-year-old woman who was killed. Burbank Police Department officers responded to Burbank Retirement Villa, located at 1911 Grismer Avenue, shortly after 8 a.m. regarding an attempted murder. Upon arrival, responding officers found the female employee suffering from several stab wounds to her arms and neck. The woman was taken to a hospital, where she died, police said. 

Suspected DUI Driver Involved In Fatal Hit-and-Run Outside Santa Monica Bar He Had Been Asked To Leave: Police
A man has been charged with murder in a hit-and crash that happened in Santa Monica after he was kicked out of a bar, police said Wednesday. The incident unfolded early Monday after the suspect, 29-year-old Nicholas Sloan of Culver City, was asked by staff to leave Busby's Bar/Restaurant, according to a Santa Monica Police Department news release. Enraged by the demand, Sloan retrieved his Porsche Panamera and apparently tried to intentionally run over a patron near the front of the establishment, police said, citing evidence and witness statements. Instead, the suspect allegedly struck the victim and sped off. Officers responded around 1:05 a.m. to the 3100 block of Santa Monica Boulevard, where the bar is located, and found the male victim at the scene. He was taken to a local hospital where he later died, according to the release. Witnesses described the dark-colored Porsche to investigators and the vehicle was later pulled over for speeding near Ventura Boulevard and Corbin Avenue, in Tarzana, police said.

LA Man Arrested, Accused Of Trafficking A Teen And Kidnapping Her Child In Long Beach
A 23-year-old felon suspected of sexually trafficking a 17-year-old girl and kidnapping her infant child was arrested, Long Beach police announced Wednesday. Long Beach Police Department officers responded at about 8:15 p.m. Saturday to the area of Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue and Hill Street on reports of dispute. The officers spoke to the 17-year-old girl “who they believed was a victim of human trafficking” and determined that Antonio Lettmen of Los Angeles had taken her child and demanded a ransom. LBPD Night Vice Investigation Unit personnel investigated the matter and were able to recover the child, according to police. No further details were released. During the course of the investigation, police determined Lettmen had trafficked the 17-year-old woman and assaulted her. Police officers and investigators found Lettmen on Monday in a vehicle near his residence in Los Angeles and took him into custody without incident, according to an LBPD statement. Police searched the car and Lettmen's residence and uncovered a semi- automatic firearm and “additional evidence pertaining to the human trafficking of the 17-year-old minor.”
Los Angeles Daily News

Man Suspected Of Stealing Flatbed Truck Outside Glendale Jail Arrested For Third Time In Three Days
A 23-year-old homeless man was arrested in La Verne Wednesday after allegedly stealing a flatbed truck immediately after being released from jail. Kaelun Scharrer was released from the Glendale City Jail at about 6 a.m. due to Los Angeles County's "zero-dollar" bail schedule, and noticed the unoccupied truck was parked "directly in front of the Glendale PD jail release door" with the keys in the ignition, according to Glendale Police Department Sgt. Christian Hauptmann. Scharrer entered the truck and fled southbound on Isabel Street. The driver of the truck, who was across the street delivering a dumpster, witnessed the theft and immediately reported it to the Glendale Police Department. The truck was equipped with a tracking device, which allowed officers to track it to a parking lot in the area of Fruit Street and Foothill Boulevard in La Verne. La Verne Police Department officers stopped the truck in the parking lot and took Scharrer into custody. He was taken back to the Glendale City Jail and booked on $25,000 bail.

Pentagon IDs Officer Slain In Stabbing As Officials Seek Clues
Federal investigators were digging Wednesday into the background of a Georgia man who officials say fatally stabbed a Pentagon police officer at a transit station outside the building before being shot and killed himself. The Pentagon Force Protection Agency identified the slain officer as George Gonzalez, a New York native and Army veteran who served in Iraq and joined the police force three years ago. He died after being attacked Tuesday morning on a bus platform outside the Pentagon. The burst of violence temporarily placed the U.S. military headquarters on lockdown and jangled the nerves of a region already primed to be on high alert for violence and potential intruders outside federal government buildings. The FBI was leading the investigation into the violence and the suspect, identified by multiple law enforcement officials as Austin William Lanz, 27, of Georgia. The authorities were examining Lanz's background, including his criminal history, jail records, financial information and any online accounts as they tried to identify a potential motive for the attack, a law enforcement official said.
Associated Press

Illinois Officer Struck And Killed By Fleeing Car; Suspect Sought
An Illinois police officer died early Wednesday while trying to stop a car fleeing police into Missouri, authorities said. The officer from Brooklyn was struck around 3 a.m. on the McKinley Bridge, which connects the two states. He was setting up stop sticks, which flatten tires, when he was struck by a red Dodge Charger, according to Illinois State Police. The officer was identified as Brian Pierce, who was new to the department and in his 20s, Brooklyn Police Captain Antonio White told KMOV-TV. “Officer Pierce was a very fine young man. Very energetic," White told the station. “When he came to work, he put a smile on your face. He's an officer that you'd love to have on your team, your unit, he's there all the time. If he was off work he'd show up, he just loved doing his job and this is what he loved to do as a police officer.” Police didn't offer details on what prompted the police chase, which began at a Brooklyn nightclub where officers were working to obtain video.
Associated Press

Public Safety News

Firefighters Use Ropes To Rescue Motorist Trapped 100 Feet Below 118 Freeway In Chatsworth
Firefighters performed a rope rescue early Thursday morning of a person who was trapped in a vehicle that went off the road and approximately 100 feet down an embankment in Chatsworth, authorities said. Firefighters responded at 2:23 a.m. to a location near Indian Drive off the eastbound 118 Freeway and used ropes to bring the person up the side of the embankment, said Los Angeles Fire Department spokeswoman Margaret Stewart. The person was taken to a hospital in critical condition, Stewart said. The age and gender of the person was unknown. No further details were immediately available.
Los Angeles Daily News

This App That Helps Firefighters Locate And Rescue Missing People Could Save Your Life
An app called “What3Words,” which people often use to meet with friends, or simply to help them locate the place where they parked, is demonstrating that technology can be a great ally in saving lives. Los Angeles firefighters, who started to use the app recently, say What3Words has already made it easier for them to rescue hundreds of people. Los Angeles Fire Department personnel perform rescues in the air, water and on the ground. But in the delicate task, firefighters are always fighting against time. "Seconds make a huge difference in rescuing people, especially if they are having a medical emergency," said David Ortiz, a spokesman for the Los Angeles Fire Department. "Just five minutes can mean the difference between life and death”. During an emergency, especially when people are stressed, they lose track of time and space, and they easily forget the street and address where they are. “There are times when people say: I'm in the coliseum. What part of the coliseum? The stadium? It's huge! I'm at the park! What part of the park?” In July, the fire department decided to test “What3Words” which, as the name implies, in three words, gives the exact location of a person.

Local Government News

Solis Issues Executive Order Mandating L.A. County Employees Get Vaccinated
Hilda Solis, chair of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, issued an executive order Wednesday evening requiring the county's 110,000 employees to provide proof of vaccination against COVID-19 by Oct. 1. In issuing the order, Solis cited an 18-fold increase in coronavirus cases in the county and a five-fold increase in hospitalizations — many involving unvaccinated people — since the county lifted its social distancing restrictions in June and the extra-contagious Delta variant began rapidly spreading across the region. “As vaccinations continue at a pace slower than what is necessary to slow the spread, the need for immediate action is great,” Solis said in a statement. The order said Solis was given powers to issue such directives when the county declared a local emergency in March 2020. It said the county would work with labor organizations “regarding the effects” of the policy. Labor representatives could not immediately be reached for comment late Wednesday.
Los Angeles Times

LA Considers Requiring Proof Of At Least Partial COVID Vaccination To Enter Public Indoor Spaces
Proof of at least partial vaccination against COVID-19 would be required to enter public indoor spaces in the city of Los Angeles, including restaurants, bars, gyms, concert venues, movie theaters and even "retail establishments,'' under a proposal introduced Wednesday by City Council President Nury Martinez. "Enough is enough already,'' said Martinez, who co-introduced the motion with Councilman Mitch O'Farrell. "Hospital workers are exhausted, moms who have put aside their careers are tired, and our kids cannot afford the loss of another school year. We have three vaccines that work and are readily available, so what's it going to take?'' The proposal is similar to a policy announced this week in New York City, but it would be more restrictive with the inclusion of retail establishments, potentially limiting access to some basic necessities. The New York policy restricts access only to more entertainment-oriented venues such as indoor restaurants, fitness centers and theaters.

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: