A veteran sheriff’s deputy is suing Los Angeles County, alleging he was suspended without pay for reporting that he saw a retired deputy receiving oral sex in a car parked on county property in an area known for prostitution.
D’Andre Lampkin’s Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit alleges whistleblower retaliation and seeks unspecified damages.
LASD spokeswoman Nicole Nishida issued a statement regarding the lawsuit.
“The Sheriff’s Department has not received this lawsuit or had the opportunity to review it and will reserve comment on pending litigation,” she said.
According to the complaint filed Tuesday, Lampkin joined the LASD in July 2007 and was assigned to the mental evaluation team at the department’s headquarters. He observed the retired deputy, who is not named in the complaint, receiving oral sex on Sept. 4, 2015, the suit states.
“Plaintiff approached the retired deputy to investigate and ultimately gave him a warning because plaintiff had to respond to an emergency call,” the suit states.
The retired lawman showed Lampkin a badge and warned, “I still know people and I’m very well-connected with the department,” according to the lawsuit.
Believing that keeping quiet would violate the law, Lampkin reported the former deputy’s actions to his bosses, the suit states.
Lampkin later learned that the retired deputy had made “baseless criticism” of him to the department “in an attempt to cover up his own illegal conduct,” the suit states.
A sheriff’s lieutenant who was a friend of the ex-deputy warned Lampkin that his buddy “knows a lot of people who are high up in the department,” according to the complaint.
In January 2016, Lampkin, a sergeant and the retired deputy met to discuss the incident, the suit states. The former lawman misrepresented what happened by saying he was “enjoying lunch with his girlfriend and worked there,” the suit states.
“You’re very young, I would hate to see you lose your job over something stupid,” the retired deputy told the plaintiff, the suit alleges.
But when Lampkin refused to corroborate the former deputy’s version of events, the latter slammed one hand on the table, began to rant and said he knew a department chief, the suit states.
The ex-deputy said Lampkin would lose his gun and badge, “then stormed out of the room, after obtaining plaintiff’s business card,” the suit states.
After the former deputy left, the sergeant told Lampkin, “All you have to do is shut up about it,” the suit states.
Lampkin began experiencing retaliation in April 2016 and has been suspended without pay since March of this year, the suit states.