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

March 22, 2022
Law Enforcement News

Police Arrest Murder Suspect After Pursuit Ends In Mar Vista
The Los Angeles Police Department says a murder suspect is in custody after a pursuit that ended in Mar Vista Sunday. Police say the Long Beach police went into pursuit of a male in his 40's or 50s around 6:30 p.m. Sunday. The suspect was driving a black Mercedes. Long Beach officers initiated a pursuit. The pursuit went from the 405 and then continued onto surface streets. At one point during the pursuit, Police say the suspect tried to take a woman as a hostage. The pursuit ended at a Starbucks at the corner of Barrington Avenue and National Boulevard. As of Sunday evening, Police say the suspect has refused to give their name.  WestSide Current

Suspects Charged With Killing In Woodland Hills Hotel Had Partied With Victim, Police Say
A man and woman charged in the brutal killing of 42-year-old Jeffrey Howe in a Woodland Hills hotel this month claim they were trying to get back items the victim stole from them when they were partying together, according to new details authorities released about the case. Anthony Phillip Ostroff, 70, and Calene Anne Frank, 52, were charged Monday with the first-degree murder of Howe, whose body was found bound and handcuffed March 10 on the floor of a Extended Stay America hotel on Ventura Boulevard, according to the Los Angeles County district attorney's office. Ostroff, also known as Anthony Saviano, and Frank — who also goes by Calene Brudek — were arrested Friday afternoon in the 7100 block of Bothwell Road in Reseda, where the two were living together, according to court documents and the Los Angeles Police Department. The suspects, victim and another person partied the night before Howe's murder in the hotel, and drugs and alcohol were involved, said Steve Castro, a homicide detective with the LAPD's Valley Bureau. Castro said the suspects claim that Howe took items from them, including a wallet. Upset, they entered his room the following day to retrieve them, he said. Los Angeles Times

Passenger Appears To Point Gun At Crowd During Street Takeover In South L.A. A passenger hanging out of a vehicle involved in a street takeover appeared to pull out a gun and point it at a crowd of people in the Broadway-Manchester neighborhood of South Los Angeles Sunday night. The incident occurred around 11 p.m. in the intersection of Century Boulevard and San Pedro Street. Video showed cars doing doughnuts in the street, often appearing to lose control and nearly strike people who had run into the intersection to watch. Some spectators were seen shining laser lights on the vehicles, which could further distract the drivers. At one point, a man hanging out of the passenger side of a Dodge Charger pointed what looked like a handgun at a small group of people that had run into the street. The event continued for about 15 minutes as Los Angeles Police Department officers were being blocked by the crowd. It was unclear if any arrests were made or if anyone was injured. Sunday's street takeover comes amid a series of similar events recently. Just last month, a crowd of about 100 people showed up for a street takeover in Beverly Hills. KTLA 5

Airborne Tesla: LAPD Names TikTok User As Person Of Interest In Dangerous Stunt
A $1,000 reward is being offered in a hit-and-run investigation after a viral video shows a Tesla going airborne through an Echo Park neighborhood before crashing onto parked cars, police said. The video shows the black 2018 Tesla S-BLM launching 50 feet into the air on Baxter Street, known for being one of the steepest roadways in Los Angeles, before landing on two cars and trash cans below on Alvarado St. The video then shows the driver jumping into another Tesla before leaving the scene. Authorities found the rental luxury vehicle abandoned and without a license plate. According to the Los Angeles Police Department's Central Traffic Division, they have received over 50 tips from people who reported social media users are connected to the dangerous stunt. Investigators said 90% of the tips report TikTok user @dominyas was behind the wheel during the incident. Now, LAPD said the TikTok user is considered a person of interest "based on the public postings on his account." LAPD also noted the other 10% of tips regarding the investigation are from people who said two Instagram users witnessed the event. FOX 11

Man Convicted, Gets Life In Prison For Murder Of Former LA Clippers Center
A jury on Monday convicted a Tennessee man in the slaying of former NBA player Lorenzen Wright, whose bullet-riddled body was found in a field nearly 12 years ago in his hometown of Memphis. The 12-person jury deliberated for about two hours before it found Billy Ray Turner guilty of first-degree murder, attempted murder and conspiracy in the death of Wright, a 6-foot, 11-inch center who played 13 seasons in the NBA before he retired after the 2008-2009 season. Shelby County Criminal Court Judge Lee Coffee sentenced Turner, 51, to life in prison for the murder conviction. He will be sentenced for the other charges at a later date. Coffee called Wright "a sacred son" of Memphis and told his mother, Deborah Marion, that the trial might not bring her closure but to "celebrate the good" about her son. The slaying is one of the most highly publicized murder cases in Memphis history. Wright's decomposing body was found riddled with bullet wounds in a swampy field in east Memphis on July 28, 2010. The 34-year-old father of six had been missing for days before his body was discovered. Turner had already pleaded guilty to possessing a weapon as a convicted felon after he was found with two guns when he was arrested in Wright's killing in 2017. Turner is serving a 16-year prison sentence on the separate gun charge. FOX 11

Crash Injures Six — Three Critically — In Reseda
Six people were injured, three critically, in a multi-vehicle crash in Reseda on Sunday. The crash happened near 18300 Sherman Way at 4:50 p.m., according to Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman Brian Humphrey. In addition to the three critically injured, two others were in fair condition and one suffered minor injuries, Humphrey said. Five of the six people were transported to a hospital for treatment. No information on the genders or ages of those hurt was immediately available.  Los Angeles Daily News

Homeowner Fires At Trespasser In Tarzana
A trespasser remains at large after he was allegedly shot and wounded by a homeowner early Monday morning in a Tarzana neighborhood, authorities said. At about 6:30 a.m., Los Angeles police officers responded to a report of a single shot fired in the 5800 block of Melvin Avenue, a few blocks north of the 101 Freeway. According to LAPD Lt. Julie Rodriguez, a homeowner had discovered a transient on a vacant property that he owns. “It appears a possible transient had breached into a vacant residence,” Rodriguez said. “The resident who lives nearby who owns that property became aware that somebody was on his property. We're not sure at this time exactly what happened.” After being struck, the trespasser ran from the scene, the homeowner told officers. He remains on the loose. The homeowner said the suspect was struck in his “lower-extremities” and the wound was not life-threatening, Rodriguez told CBSLA. The owner, who cooperated with officers, alleges that he shot the man in self-defense. “It's most likely going to be some kind of self-defense on the part of the owner who did fire one round at our victim,” Rodriguez said. The trespasser was last seen fleeing on Corbin Avenue, north of Hatteras Street. CBS 2

Police Seek Four Suspects Who Robbed Gas Station In Culver City
Culver City police Monday sought the public's help to identify four suspects who robbed a Shell gas station at gunpoint. Culver City Police Department officers were called just after 11:45 a.m. Friday to the gas station at 3801 Sepulveda Blvd., near the San Diego (405) Freeway, according to a department statement. Two employees told officers that three suspects entered the gas station and “began to engage the victims in conversation” before all three produced handguns and demanded money, according to the CCPD. The employees provided the suspects with $438 from the cash register, and the suspects fled the scene in a vehicle that was driven by a fourth suspect. No injuries were reported in the robbery. The first suspect was described as a man about 18-years-old and standing 5-foot-3 inches to 5-foot-5 inches tall, with a skinny build and black hair. He was last seen wearing a blue mask, blue hat, blue jeans, blue shoes and a black long-sleeved shirt, and he was armed with an olive-colored handgun.

Man Found Shot To Death At An Inglewood Park Over The Weekend, Police Investigate
Police are investigating a deadly shooting at an Inglewood park early Sunday morning. Officers responded to reports of gunshots heard near Florence Avenue and Prairie Avenue just before 5:00 a.m., officials said. They found a man suffering from a gunshot wound inside of Edward Vincent Park. The victim died at the scene. So far nobody has been arrested. No further details were immediately known. Anyone with information is asked to contact Inglewood Police Department at (310) 412-5246.  ABC 7

Man Found Dead In Burbank; Foul Play Not Suspected
A man was found dead in a parked vehicle in Burbank Monday, though investigators did not believe foul play was involved. Burbank Police Department officers were called about 10:15 a.m. to 1006 North Lake Street, near the Golden State (5) Freeway, and found the man unresponsive. He was pronounced dead at the scene. His name was withheld pending notification of his next of kin, but police noted he was in his late 50s to early 60s. “At this time, no foul play is suspected, and investigators are working with the Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner's office to determine the cause of death,” according to Burbank police. Anyone with information on the death was asked to contact the BPD Detective Bureau at 818-238-3210.

Portion Of Highway Renamed To Honor California Cop Killed By Wrong-Way Driver
A portion of Highway 180 has been named in honor of Fresno Police officer Phia Vang. Close to 100 people including, family, friends and community leaders, met Saturday to unveil signage designating the Officer Phia Vang Memorial Interchange at Highway 180 and Temperance Avenue. The event was attended by Fresno Mayor Jerry Dyer, police Chief Paco Balderrama and Assemblyman Jim Patterson, R-Fresno, along with Vang's son and brother. Vang, a 48-year-old married father of four, came to the United States from Laos in 1980 and relocated to the Fresno area in 1982. He was only the third Hmong officer on the Fresno Police Department when he was hired in 1993. Over the years, he worked in the southeast, northwest and southwest districts as a patrol officer and also with the MAGEC anti-gang unit. Vang was killed in a car crash the freeway in 2019 when a wrong-way driver collided with multiple vehicles before slamming into Vang's pickup. Vang was on his way home from work at the time. The driver was also killed in the incident near McCall Avenue. Patterson authored the Assembly bill, which was passed in September. The Fresno Bee

Police: 2 Pennsylvania Troopers Among 3 Killed In Possible 'DUI-Related' Crash
State police have opened a driving under the influence investigation following the deaths of two Pennsylvania troopers and a civilian struck by a vehicle on an interstate in Philadelphia early Monday, state police said. Trooper Martin F. Mack III and Trooper Branden T. Sisca were dispatched after a man was reported walking in the southbound lanes of I-95 near the sports stadiums in south Philadelphia, Capt. James Kemm said. The troopers arrived around 12:45 a.m. Monday and were trying to take the man into custody and walk him back to their vehicle when another vehicle “traveling at a high rate of speed" struck all three, Kemm said. “The impact was so great that it threw the troopers over into the northbound lanes of Interstate 95," Kemm said. The vehicle ended up on the right-side shoulder of the highway and the driver remained at the scene. Other arriving troopers found witnesses trying to revive the victims, who were pronounced dead at the scene, Kemm said. “Right now, we are conducting an active investigation that is DUI-related,” Kemm said. Associated Press

Indiana Officer Shot In Neck Meets Firefighters Who Saved His Life
Indianapolis Police Officer Thomas Mangan was shot in the line of duty on February 27. The bullet went through his neck, causing severe damage to his laryngeal cartilage. Mangan might not be able to speak or swallow normally ever again, reported WTHR. But he lived – thanks to quick-thinking Indianapolis firefighters. On Sunday, Mangan finally got to meet his rescuers. According to the report, Mangan and his wife invited the firefighters to their home to thank them in person. "Over coffee and banana bread lots of questions were asked and answered — giving both sides some much-needed closure," the Indianapolis Fire Department said in a  post . “Officer Mangan led the group in prayer and then headed outside to get an up-close view of the engine that transported him that fateful night in critical condition.” Mangan was shot just two blocks away from a fire station. The crew sprang into action, driving Mangan to the hospital in a fire engine. "Engine 3 was instrumental in the sequence of lifesaving measures that ultimately saved Officer Mangan's life and the long-awaited meeting was emotional for all,” IFD wrote.  PoliceOne

Public Safety News

1 Deputy Still Hospitalized After Weekend Crash Of LA County Sheriff's Rescue Helicopter
One of six people injured when a Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department helicopter went down in the Angeles National Forest remained at a hospital as of Monday, March 21. The patient was being held for observation, and was one of five deputies who were travelling with a doctor joining them on a ride-along aboard a Sheriff's Department rescue helicopter Saturday, March 19, LASD officials said Monday afternoon. The other people aboard the aircraft also suffered injuries that were not considered life threatening, and released from treatment at Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center over the weekend. Highway 39 was closed leading up to the site where the helicopter went down as of 5 p.m. Monday evening, LASD Lt. Louis Serrrano said. Authorities were using a crane to get it loaded onto a truck and relocated for further inspection, a task they hoped to complete by sundown. Once that is done, the roadway will be reopened. “We're in the process of hoisting it up and getting it out of the area,” Serrano said. Los Angeles Daily News

LA County To Lift Proof Of Vaccination Requirement For Indoor Events On April 1
Los Angeles County will align with the state and lift the mandate that requires attendees of indoor mega-events to show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test. The requirement will be lifted on April 1 in conjunction with the state. The move follows the lifting of other COVID restrictions — such as indoor mask-wearing requirements — in response to dwindling infection and hospitalization numbers. Health officials continued to urge people to take precautionary measures — including masks — in crowded situations, even though they are no longer mandated. On Monday, the county reported 935 new COVID infections over the past two days bringing the total caseload to 2,825,423. The county also reported another 29 deaths bringing the death toll to 31,491. CBS 2

California Could See Coronavirus Increase This Spring Due To Omicron Subvariant BA.2
Coronavirus cases are on the upswing worldwide, prompting some officials to warn that California could see increases this spring because of the Omicron subvariant BA.2, even though cases of the strain so far have been modest in the state. The World Health Organization has recorded the first week-over-week increase in global coronavirus cases since late January, with cases rising 8% compared with the previous week. With infections up in parts of Africa, Asia and Europe, officials say they wouldn't be surprised if new cases climbed again in the U.S. — and in California — this spring. What remains unclear is whether a national increase would be a ripple or a deluge that could again strain hospitals. So far, coronavirus cases are either still declining or flat across California and in L.A. County. But even with the decline, officials are closely watching how Omicron subvariant BA.2 — which is 30% to 60% more contagious than the original Omicron variant — constitutes a growing percentage of new cases. Nationally, BA.2 represented an estimated 23% of variants analyzed between March 6 and March 12, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The previous week, the subvariant represented an estimated 14% of virus cases analyzed nationally. BA.2 was found most frequently in the Northeast, where it represented nearly 40% of coronavirus cases; on the West Coast, it represented about 25% of cases. Los Angeles Times

Local Government News

Five Leading Candidates For L.A. Mayor Debate On Tuesday. How To Watch
All five of the leading candidates for mayor of Los Angeles will appear in a televised debate for the first time Tuesday. The event at Bovard Auditorium on the USC campus, which is co-sponsored by the Los Angeles Times, USC Dornsife Center for the Political Future and Fox 11 L.A., will include Rep. Karen Bass (D-Los Angeles), City Atty. Mike Feuer and City Councilmen Joe Buscaino and Kevin de León. But unlike the first televised face-off last month, which was held at Loyola Marymount University, Tuesday's debate will also include billionaire developer Rick Caruso. He'll take the place of candidate Mel Wilson, a former member of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority board. Seats in the auditorium were available by invitation only. Here are several ways for you to tune in. On TV: Fox 11 will carry the debate live and without commercial interruption from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Online: A livestream of the debate will be available in multiple places: YouTube; The Times' website, Twitter account and Facebook page; Fox 11's site; and the Center for the Political Future's Facebook page. After the fact: A recording of the debate will be available on YouTube and The Times' website. Los Angeles Times

City Council To Consider Designating Hollywood Forever Cemetery Historic-Cultural Monument
The Los Angeles City Council on Tuesday will consider a unanimous recommendation from the city's Cultural Heritage Commission to designate the Hollywood Forever Cemetery an historic-cultural monument. The cemetery was included in the National Register of Historic Places in 1999, the cemetery's 100th anniversary. On June 25, Councilman Mitch O'Farrell began the city's effort to include the cemetery on its own list of historic-cultural monuments. The Cultural Heritage Commission considered the property on Oct. 21 and recommended the City Council add it to the list. “I was surprised that this wasn't already on our list. … It's always interesting when something comes before us that you think, `That's not a monument yet?”‘ Commissioner Richard Barron said during the meeting. The monument designation was recommended for the cemetery's association with the early development of Hollywood and the western expansion of Los Angeles during the 20th century, as well as for its association with the development of the cemetery industry in L.A. and the development of Jewish burial facilities in the city. CBS 2

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: