Baca unhappy with FBI probe in jails
Plans meeting today with U.S. Attorney's office
LOS ANGELES (CNS) - Sheriff Lee Baca is expected to meet with the U.S
attorney in Los Angeles today amid growing tension between his department and
the FBI over a new FBI probe of alleged deputy misconduct in the Los Angeles
County jail system, the nation's largest.
FBI agents orchestrated an undercover sting in which they paid about
$1,500 to a sheriff's deputy to smuggle a cellphone to an inmate, sources told
the Los Angeles Times. The inmate turned out to be an FBI informant.
The revelation was the first public indication that the FBI probe into
allegations of inmate beatings and other deputy misconduct have uncovered
possible criminal wrongdoing.
The FBI conducted the cellphone sting against the deputy without
notifying top Sheriff's Department officials, enraging Baca, who was scheduled
to meet today with U.S. Attorney Andre Birotte.
Baca complained in a television interviews Monday that smuggling a
cellphone inside a secured lockup created a serious safety breach and may have
constituted a crime.
According to The Times, federal authorities are investigating inmate
beatings and other acts of misconduct by deputies in the jails. The allegations
include deputies breaking one inmate's jaw and beating another inmate for two
minutes while he was unconscious.
Besides the jail investigations, federal authorities have two other
inquiries involving the Sheriff's Department under way.
The U.S. Justice Department's civil rights division last month announced
a ``pattern and practice" investigation into allegations that deputies in the
Antelope Valley discriminated against minority residents who receive government
Also last month, The Times reported that a Sheriff's Department captain
had been put on leave after federal agents suspected hearing her voice on a
wiretap of a suspected Compton drug ring.
Sources told The Times that the deputy allegedly caught in the sting
accepted the money to smuggle the cellphone to an inmate at the Men's Central
Jail. Unbeknown to the deputy, the inmate was working as an FBI informant, The
The deputy, Gilbert Michel, 38, resigned shortly after sheriff's officials put him on leave, according to The Times' sources.
LOS ANGELES, Calif.—A multi-agency state task force arrested 74 members and associates of the Armenian Power organized crime group today on a range of charges that include kidnapping, extortion, bank and identity theft and drug trafficking.
Two federal indictments name 99 suspects, 88 of whom are associated with the gang known as AP or AP13, according to federal agents. All together, the gang is believed to have stolen more than $20 million.
MALIBU, Calif.—More bones were found on Sunday in a Malibu ravine where the remains of a Mitrice Richardson were found 11 months after she was allowed to walk away from a sheriff's station.
The goal of the search, which included coroner's investigators and a sheriff's homicide detective, was to find anything that could be related to the case of Mitrice Richardson, Steve Whitmore of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department told City News Service.
LOS ANGELES, Calif.—The mother of Mitrice Richardson, whose remains were found in a ravine about 11 months after she was released from the sheriff's Malibu/Lost Hills Station, wants her daughter's body exhumed.
Latice Sutton has scheduled a news conference Monday to talk about her daughter's case. Sutton wants the FBI to look at whether sheriff's deputies moved the body improperly, without letting coroner's investigators examining it where it was found, and if authorities made a rush to judgment in ruling the death accidental.
BELL - The U.S. Justice Department has launched an investigation in Bell, to determine whether city officials violated civil rights of Latino residents by aggressively towing cars and charging residents exorbitant fees to get their vehicles back.
Federal officials are also looking into complaints about other ways the city tried to boost revenues, including through aggressive code enforcement, law enforcement sources told the Los Angeles Times.
LAS VEGAS, Nevada — Disgraced football legend O.J. Simpson was in a Las Vegas courtroom Monday in a bid to get his robbery, assault and kidnapping convictions thrown out.
Dressed in a blue prison uniform, the Heisman Trophy winner and former Buffalo Bills star halfback appeared to have grayed some during his four years of incarceration.