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 9, 2021
Law Enforcement News

LAPD Union Urges NBA To Punish Jaxson Hayes Over Alleged Assault During Violent Arrest
Cops are so livid over the way they say Jaxson Hayes fought them during his arrest last month ... they're now strongly urging NBA commissioner Adam Silver to take action against the Pelicans star. It's all spelled out in a letter, obtained by TMZ Sports, written by the Los Angeles Police Protective League -- a police union representing 9,000 rank and file LAPD officers -- to Silver and New Orleans Pelicans owner Gayle Benson. In the note -- which is four pages in length -- the police union says 6'11, 220-pound Hayes became combative on July 27 after they responded to a domestic disturbance call involving the hooper. Law enforcement says Hayes refused orders, hurled the n-word at officers, and pushed one cop so hard into the wall, the basketball player injured the "much physically smaller" man. We've obtained photos of the cop's alleged injuries ... and they appear to show the officer's elbow was swollen and bloody following the incident. LAPPL went on to say in the letter that after a review of body camera footage from the night ... they strongly believe Hayes was out of line, and criminally assaulted an officer during the arrest. "Mr. Silver," the officers said in the letter, "the actions of your player were unlawful, completely unacceptable and are as clear a prima facie case of violating several of the National Basketball Association policies as we have seen." "We respectfully request that you immediately initiate a thorough investigation into Mr. Hayes' actions before, during and after the incident and to take appropriate corrective action to hold Mr. Hayes accountable." They continued, "The video is clear. Your swift action in this incident is warranted."

‘They're Worn Out': LAPD Contends With Hundreds Of Officer Resignations, Retirements After Protests, Pandemic Break Out
America's police departments are dealing with a nationwide recruitment crisis, analyses from law enforcement agencies both large and small say, with an ever-growing wave of officers quitting their jobs at the same time that new hires are scarce. As furor over the death of George Floyd and other African Americans at the hands of police swept the country in 2020, an acute increase in resignations and retirements quickly followed. The police agencies experienced cutbacks as the pandemic-affected economy cratered, biting into their budgets for hiring and training new recruits. And the stresses of COVID-19 and death haunting most U.S. communities led many officers to simply leave the profession to keep their families safe. That's according to many of the nation's police chiefs describing the immense pressure their officers faced over the last year and a half. “They're worn out,” Los Angeles Police Department Chief Michel Moore said. “They're frustrated. They're tired. They're feeling fatigued, and they're saying they're looking for options outside the profession.” In a report last week to the L.A. Police Commission, Moore and other LAPD commanders outlined the problem facing the department. In just the 2020-21 fiscal year that ended in June, LAPD saw 631 police from all ranks leave the department, many through retirement. That was nearly 100 more than left LAPD in the prior fiscal year. From fiscal years beginning in 2016 to 2019, the average annual number of officers leaving the department was 466.
Los Angeles Daily News

Two Police Officers Injured In Canoga Park Crash
Two Los Angeles Police Department officers were injured Friday in a multi-vehicle crash in Canoga Park. The crash was reported at about 3:20 p.m. in the area of Roscoe Boulevard and De Soto Avenue, according to Officer Jeffrey Lee of the LAPD Media Relations Division. It was not immediately disclosed how many vehicles were involved. Two officers were taken to a hospital with minor injures. Two other people were evaluated at the scene, but declined medical transport. The cause of the crash was under investigation.

Suspect Arrested In Killing Of Prominent Bank Of America Executive
Los Angeles police have arrested a suspect in connection with the slaying of a prominent executive at Bank of America who was a champion in helping people of color seek careers in the financial services industry. Michelle A. Avan, 48, was found dead Thursday morning by a family member at her home in Reseda, the Los Angeles Police Department said. Her family had become concerned because they had been unable to contact her. The exact cause of Avan's death is unknown but the victim appeared to have suffered trauma to her face, according to police. Detectives arrested Anthony Duane Turner on Thursday afternoon in Westchester on suspicion of killing Avan, the LAPD said in a statement. Turner, 52, was being held Saturday at the LAPD's Valley Jail Section in Van Nuys, according to booking records. Bail was set at $2 million. Turner also worked at Bank of America. Avan was a senior vice president at Bank of America and head of global women's and under-represented talent strategy, global human resources. In her role, she was responsible for helping the financial institution hire and develop talent. 
Los Angeles Times

Family Seeks Justice For Grandmother Killed In Crash In Porter Ranch
A family is seeking justice for a grandmother who was killed in a crash in Porter Ranch last week. On July 30 at around 7:30 p.m. a couple left their home on the way to the mosque to pray when a driver crashed into them near the intersection of Corbin and Mason avenue, killing a 71-year-old identified as Norbanoo Dhanani. Dhanani was transported to a local hospital where she died about three hours after the crash, but her husband survived the incident. According to the Los Angeles Police Department, a 16-year-old was driving westbound on Corbin avenue when he made a right onto northbound Mason avenue and drifted onto the southbound lane. The teenager struck the other vehicle, injuring the woman who was a passenger. The teenage driver remained on scene after the crash and did not appear to be under the influence. He was released to his parents. Meanwhile the family is seeking justice. Neighbors say in Porter Ranch, high speeds are deadly and ask for policing or cameras to slow down drivers. The incident is still under investigation.

Police Respond To Shooting In Northridge Apartment Complex
A suspect is on the run after the Los Angeles Police Department responded to reports of a shooting incident at a Northridge apartment complex Friday just after 3:15 p.m. The shooting occurred in the 9400 block of Corbin Avenue on the east side of the apartment complex, according to Officer Jeffrey Lee of the LAPD's Media Relations Division. Officials at the Los Angeles Fire Department confirmed that paramedics were sent to the scene to treat one patient, though they provided no other details about the victims condition. LAPD officers established a perimeter and were searching for the shooter as of about 4:30 p.m.

Shooting Involving Los Angeles Police Reported In North Hollywood
A shooting involving Los Angeles police was reported Friday in North Hollywood. The shooting occurred about 8:30 a.m. at Laurel Canyon Boulevard and Vanowen Street, according to the Los Angeles Police Department. Police went to the area on a 911 call of a possible kidnapping suspect, the LAPD reported. Arriving officers saw a man armed with a handgun, and the shooting occurred, the LAPD reported. The man, in his 30s, was arrested, and police recovered a handgun from the suspect, the LAPD reported. His name was not immediately available. The investigation was continuing. 
FOX 11

Mother, Child Hurt In Marina Del Rey Hit-And-Run; Suspect Caught
A driver was arrested for hitting and injuring a mother and her child, who was riding in a stroller, in Marina Del Rey Friday morning, and then trying to flee the scene. The collision occurred at 8:42 a.m. at Speedway and Galleon Street. According to the LAPD, the car struck the two and then tried to speed away, but crashed. The woman and child were taken to a hospital with injuries not believed to be serious. The suspect was arrested. The driver's gender and name were not immediately confirmed. It's unclear if drugs or alcohol contributed to the crash. The exact circumstances of the wreck are under investigation.

Attorney Blasts Conflict Over Prosecutor Still On Payroll Of LA County Public Defender's Office
A victims rights attorney has asked a judge to remove a Los Angeles County prosecutor from the case of a convicted killer contesting his death penalty sentence because the prosecutor appears to be on the payroll of the defense. Documents obtained through a public records request show Deputy District Attorney Diana Teran remains employed with the Los Angeles County Public Defender's Office, where she is paid $218,042 annually while she is on loan to the District Attorney's Office, attorney Kathleen Cady said in motion filed last week in Los Angeles County Superior Court. “The mental gymnastics one must employ to figure out what it means to have a public defender on loan to the District Attorney's Office is frankly mind-boggling,” the motion says. “It is inconceivable that the district attorney, the public defender and whomever at county counsel or the Board of Supervisors' office approved this arrangement were unable to perceive any irregularity with this arrangement.” Cady represents family members of 79-year-old Elmer Benson and his wife, Gladys Benson, 74, who were stabbed to death in 1996 inside their South Gate home by Samuel Zamudio, who owed the couple money. Zamudio was convicted of two counts of first-degree murder and sentenced to death.
Los Angeles Daily News

Burglary Suspects Steal 2 Exotic Birds From Canoga Park Business
Authorities are searching for two suspects who stole a pair of exotic birds from a business in the Canoga Park area. The suspects approached the business in the 21700 block of Sherman Way through an alleyway and removed a rear glass door to enter the building about 2:20 a.m. Sunday, according to a Los Angeles Police Department statement. They stole a Major Mitchell's cockatoo named Abbey and a yellow-naped Amazon parrot named Paco from the business and fled the scene, police said. The first suspect was described as a man about 20 to 25 years old, 5 feet, 7 inches tall and weighing between 150 and 170 pounds. He was last seen wearing a blue Nike sweatshirt and black tennis shoes. The second suspect was described as a person of “unknown gender” of the same age range and same height, but weighing between 120 and 140 pounds. That person was last seen wearing a gray sweatshirt, black pants and blue tennis shoes. A cash reward is being offered if the two parrots are located, and anyone with information on the burglary was asked to contact LAPD Topanga Area Detective Gudino at 818 756-5880. Calls made during non-business hours or on weekends can be directed to 877-527-3247.
Los Angeles Daily News

Chicago IDs Officer Slain In Traffic Stop Shooting; 2nd Officer Critical
One Chicago police officer was killed and another was critically wounded during an exchange of gunfire with at least one suspect during a traffic stop Saturday night in the West Englewood neighborhood on the South Side. Police, family and the Cook County medical examiner's office identified the officer who died as Ella French, a 29-year-old who had worked as a Chicago cop since April 2018. She was the first Chicago police officer to be shot and killed in the line of duty since Mayor Lori Lightfoot took office in 2019. The other officer, with the department since August 2014, is fighting for his life in critical condition at the University of Chicago Medical Center. The shooting happened just after 9 p.m. Saturday near West 63rd Street and South Bell Avenue when the officers conducted a traffic stop on three people in a vehicle, First Deputy police Superintendent Eric Carter said at a Sunday morning news conference. During the stop, someone opened fire on the officers and at least one officer returned fire, Carter said. Two officers, including French, and one of the suspects were shot.
Chicago Tribune

Man Sentenced To Death For Killing Texas Detective
A man convicted of capital murder was sentenced Friday to death for killing a San Antonio police detective. The Bexar County jury deliberated for 7 1/2 hours Friday before recommending the death sentence for Otis McKane after finding him guilty of capital murder in the November 2016 shooting of Detective Benjamin Marconi. State District Judge Ron Rangel accepted the recommendation. Prosecutors argued McKane was a sociopath who poses a danger to the community. McKane's attorneys argued otherwise. As he was being taken to jail following the shooting, McKane told reporters that he “lashed out at someone who didn't deserve it” because he was upset with the court system. McKane said he was angry because he had not been allowed to see his son during a custody battle. Extra sheriff's deputies surrounded McKane during the sentencing Friday after McKane attacked a bailiff on July 26 when jurors found him guilty after 25 minutes of deliberation. The jury could have recommended a sentence of life imprisonment without parole.
Associated Press

Federal Officials Make Meth Bust — One Of Largest In U.S. History — At Otay Mesa Border Crossing
Federal authorities made what they called one of the largest methamphetamine busts in U.S. history this week, finding more than 5,528 pounds of the drug inside a semitrailer that crossed from Mexico at the Otay Mesa Port of Entry in San Diego. Agents also found more than 127 pounds of fentanyl inside the commercial truck, which had California license plates and was being driven by a Mexican citizen, authorities said. The driver, Carlos Gerardo Symonds Saavedra, was charged Friday with two federal felony counts of importing controlled substances into the U.S. Each count carries a minimum sentence of 10 years in prison and a maximum of life imprisonment. “This is believed to be one of the largest methamphetamine seizures in the nation's history,” officials from the office of the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of California said in a news release Friday night. Last October, authorities found about 3,000 pounds of methamphetamine in a semitrailer at the same port of entry. At the time, a U.S. Customs and Border Protection spokesperson said it was the second-largest bust ever, behind only a 5,000-pound bust in December 2019 in Laredo, Texas.
Los Angeles Times

NYPD: Woman Shoots Another Woman In Head On Brooklyn Street
On Wednesday night in Brooklyn, a woman wearing black leggings, a silver belt, black and white sneakers, and a big white purse got out of a double-parked white sedan, walked around a parked BMW, stepped onto the curb, walked across the sidewalk, pulled a small handgun from behind her back, and put a bullet in the back of the head of a woman chatting with some people by a stoop. The shooter then turned around, got into the driver's seat of the car, and drove off. She did all this in front of several witnesses and video cameras. The NYPD released video footage from those cameras showing the shocking execution-style murder of Delia Johnson, 42, on Franklin Avenue in Crown Heights at about 9:40 p.m. Wednesday. Johnson's mother, Delia Berry, believes her daughter knew the killer. Johnson's brother told the Daily News he believes the killer followed his sister from a neighborhood funeral that they'd both attended.
FOX 11

Public Safety News

With COVID-19 Cases Still On The Rise In L.A. County, Vaccine Mandates Expand
As the delta variant continues to spread, vaccine mandates are expanding to more sectors. Employers and government entities are clamping down on those who have refused to get the vaccine against COVID-19. In L.A. County, officials reported just more than 3,000 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday. That's a thousand less than what was recorded on Saturday. Officials say the drop could reflect an undercount due to a weekend lag in reporting. Just last week, Barbara Ferrer said that while transmission in L.A. County remains at a high level, the rise in cases may be leveling off. However, hospitalizations are on the rise. Health officials in San Bernardino County are also encountering a similar experience. “But we're seeing a trending increase, both in the ICU and overall hospital. We're also seeing what the nation is seeing, a younger portion of patients coming in, relatively young and some are pretty healthy,” said Dr. Victor Waters, chief medical officer of Dignity Health St. Bernardine. Officials say most of those hospitalized are unvaccinated.

California COVID-19 Cases Continue To Surge, Public Health Officials Urge Caution
The delta variant continues to fuel COVID-19 cases across California and the nation, and areas are now seeing a level of daily infections higher than at any point during last summer's surge. The state on Friday recorded 14,402 new COVID-19 cases — its highest number of new daily new coronavirus infections since January. The number also tops the peak during last summer's surge, which saw 12,614 new cases on August 14, 2020. With California seeing the fastest increase in new virus cases since the start of the pandemic, state health officials on Thursday stepped up vaccination requirements for a broad swath of residents, issuing orders that require all health care workers to be vaccinated by the end of September. The order also requires hospitals to verify that visitors are vaccinated or make them show proof of a recent negative test. The order for health care workers goes beyond what the state announced last month, when it said all health care workers must show proof of vaccination or undergo testing at least once a week. 

Local Government News

Los Angeles Begins Effort To Verify, Track Vaccination Status Of All City Employees
The city of Los Angeles has begun its effort to verify and track the vaccination status of all of its employees, according to memos circulated amongst a number of departments Friday. Beginning Monday, Aug. 16, the city will begin to collect vaccination status information for workers including -- the number of employees in each department who've been fully vaccinated, partially vaccinated, who are unvaccinated, and those who refuse to disclose their vaccination status. "All city departments are required to verify and track the vaccination status of employees and provide a report to the Personnel Department's Medical Services Division," one of the internal memos said. Several senior city officials say this is the first step towards creating the system that will enforce the new mandatory vaccination/constant testing program, which will have to be negotiated with the city's employee unions. The news comes as last month the city announced that it was requiring employees to get vaccinated or take a COVID test weekly as coronavirus cases began surging again.

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: