Probe into sheriff's deputies testimony
Compton jurors accuse deputies of lying on the stand
COMPTON - The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department will launch an internal investigation in response to the complaints of jurors who felt deputies lied in testifying at the trial of a man accused of having a concealed weapon, it was reported today.
Jurors said a video of the arrest and inconsistent testimony from deputies left them no choice earlier this month but to acquit David Gipson, 19, and five of them told the Los Angeles Times that authorities should investigate the deputies from the sheriff's anti-gang-unit who were involved in the case, the newspaper reported.
"These were not minor inconsistencies,'' juror Ted Rhodes, 28, a construction project manager, told The Times. "These were outright fabrications... It'll be an injustice ... if someone isn't held accountable."
It is rare for jurors to publicly say they believe law enforcement officers lied under oath. In response to questions from The Times, the Sheriff's Department conducted a reenactment of the arrest with one of the deputies to determine whether his trial testimony was credible.
Sheriff's officials later said they concluded that the deputies had told the truth and noted that prosecutors had previously come to the same conclusion.
"Yes, there are inconsistencies. Do the inconsistencies rise to the level of malice and perjury? No," sheriff's Capt. Bob Rifkin, who oversees the department's anti-gang unit, told The Times. "I'm confident that they're telling the truth."
Nevertheless, he told The Times that the department is taking the he told The Times that the department is taking the jurors' concerns seriously and will launch an internal affairs investigation.
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On Saturday, the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) Bureau, along with numerous teams, volunteers and city of Lancaster staff will conduct a survey in a specific Lancaster neighborhood with the purpose of identifying local crime and nuisance problems.
Teams will begin the door-to-door survey around 9 a.m. and continue until they have reached out to the nearly 600 homes in the area. The area to be surveyed is 10th Street West to Beech Avenue, and Avenue I to Avenue H-8. The area was identified after analysis of call and crime volume was conducted.
COMPTON, Calif.—Compton’s finances are in a shambles.
They’re in such disarray that the city amassed $369,000 in late fees over the last year because it could not pay its policing contract with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department on time, the Los Angeles Times reported today.
The city has already laid off about 15 percent of its workforce, and city leaders warn that more cuts may be on the way. City Hall has slashed spending, even canceling the city’s popular gospel concert.
The Coalition of Compton Unions, which represents about 400 city employees, filed unfair labor practice charges with the California Public Employment Relations Board against the city of Compton in response to the City Council’s approval of a budget that called for worker layoffs and unilaterally imposed concessions on the remaining work force.
LOS ANGELES, Calif.—The state’s attorney general was in Los Angeles to officially involve her office in a Southern California law enforcement partnership aimed at creating a statewide database of information to help reduce crime.
Attorney General Kamala Harris also held a closed-door meeting with about 200 area law enforcement heads to discuss new policing technologies and best practices.
LANCASTER, Calif.—Aaron Eugene Wallace, 21-years-old, has been charged with murder in the shooting death of 14-year-old Dominique Peatry at a party in Lancaster last September, but a second suspect remains at large.
Wallace of Lancaster is accused in the Sept. 5, 2010, slaying of Dominique Peatry, who was gunned down at a party near Nugent Street and Sixth Street East.