Vandalism suspect shot to death by LAPD officers in Van Nuys

VAN NUYS – A vandalism suspect was shot to death by Los Angeles police in Van Nuys early today.

The man, about 20-25 years old, died at the scene of the 3:35 a.m. shooting in the 6700 block of Hayvenhurst Avenue, the Los Angeles Police Department reported. His name was not immediately released.

Officers responded to the scene on a report of a vandalism and a disturbance in the area, according to the LAPD.

“They encountered the suspect, (and) they attempted to use less (than) lethal means to take this individual into custody,” LAPD Sgt. Al Gonzalez told reporters late this morning. “Unfortunately, that proved to be ineffective, and an officer-involved shooting occurred.”

According to reports from the scene, one or more suspects may have been vandalizing vehicles with rocks.

“Obviously, a rock can be a very deadly weapon … but whether he armed himself with anything other than that, I don’t know yet,” Gonzalez said.

  July 25, 2014  

Intent, Plagarism, and Politics

In criminal law, intent is a big deal.  The prosecutor must often prove not only what the defendant did but his state of mind while he was doing it.  Even though the harm to the victim may be the same, there is a fundamental moral difference between intentional and accidental harm.  “Even a dog distinguishes between stumbled over and being kicked,” Justice Holmes famously said.  He had a knack for putting legal concepts into concrete terms everyone can understand.

How do you prove intent?  It’s usually clear from the circumstances that an act is intentional.

Intent matters in politics as well.  Aaron Blake at the WaPo’s political blog, The Fix, is incredulous of Montana Sen. John Walsh’s claim of accidental plagarism at the Army War College.

It also takes a pretty big suspension of disbelief to think that Walsh lifted those passages without ill intent. Proving someone’s intent is always difficult, but believing that this was anything other than an attempt to cheat takes some logical leaps that are pretty hard to make.

We will be addressing intent in a Supreme Court case on threats in the coming term, Elonis v. United States.

  July 25, 2014  

Weapons Violation

Incidents listed are selected by the Officer In Charge of each shift that may have significant public interest.
Incidents listed are not inclusive of all incidents. Requests for information can be directed to the MPD Records Unit: (608) 266-4075.

Incident Report for Case #2014-237283

Incident Type

Weapons Violation

Incident Date

07/24/2014 – 10:14 PM


2000 block Westbrook Lane


A Westbrook Lane resident called for police last night after someone shot out several of his home’s windows with a BB gun. The projectiles penetrated exterior panes of double pane windows. The victim reported seeing a younger man in front of the house just prior to the property damage.

Released 07/25/2014 at 11:55 AM by PIO Joel Despain

LAPD Handcuffs Man for Video Recording Traffic Stop

A man who had been pulled over by Los Angeles police for a motorcycle violation was handcuffed when he insisted on video recording the traffic stop.

The motorcyclist  posted the video and summary Cop Block, which stated the following:

I was pulled over on my motorcycle under the pretense of my pipes being too loud. As soon as I shut down my motorcycle, the cops began asking invasive questions; was I on parole/probation? Where was I going and coming from? I told them I don’t answer questions and they became hostile and agitated. When I was able to, I retrieved my phone and began recording.

They told me I wasn’t allowed to record them and that they would place me in handcuffs if I continued to do so. That’s exactly what happened . I was handcuffed for recording the incident. They then wrote me a ticket for everything they could and told me that they would have been cool and not written me a ticket if I had not exercised my right to remain silent and had not recorded them .

There is no legal basis for cops to force you to put your phone down if you are just standing on a sidewalk, waiting for them to give you a traffic citation.

  July 25, 2014  

Weapons Violation

Incidents listed are selected by the Officer In Charge of each shift that may have significant public interest.
Incidents listed are not inclusive of all incidents. Requests for information can be directed to the MPD Records Unit: (608) 266-4075.

Incident Report for Case #2014-237024

Incident Type

Weapons Violation

Incident Date

07/24/2014 – 5:38 PM


East Towne Blvd.


A concerned citizen called for the MPD Thursday afternoon after seeing a couple of teenagers carrying a gun near East Towne Mall. Responding officers located the teens: a 15-year-old, a 14-year-old, and two 12-year-olds. Two were cited for possessing a facsimile weapon after a Airsoft  pistol was found under a tree which was near to where they were walking. 

Released 07/25/2014 at 11:44 AM by PIO Joel Despain

Albuquerque Agrees to Court and Independent Police Monitors

Friday, July 25, 2014

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The city of Albuquerque has agreed to let both a court and an independent monitor oversee reform of its troubled police department, officials said Thursday.

The Department of Justice and Mayor Richard Berry signed off on a framework of principles for addressing the eight problem areas Justice officials identified in a scathing report on police practices earlier this year.

LawOfficer: Justice Department Releases Report on Albuquerque Use of Lethal Force

Attorney General Eric Holder said the agreement “marks an important step forward in addressing the unreasonable use of deadly force uncovered in our investigation into the Albuquerque Police Department.”

Among the findings released in April: officers too frequently used deadly force on people who posed a minimal threat and used a higher level of force too often on those with mental illness.

Albuquerque police have shot 41 people since 2010, 27 of them fatally.

The agreement calls for improvements in recruiting, training, use of force policies, interactions between officers and the mentally ill, the handling of internal investigations and civilian complaints, management and community engagement.

It also say the city is committed to working with the Justice Department to craft a court-enforceable agreement to address the problems, and to have an independent monitor brought in to oversee the reforms once the plan is approved and filed with a federal court.

Berry said the agreement shows “we are rolling in the same direction.”

U.S. Attorney Damon Martinez said the idea is “to go to court together, instead of as adversaries.”

Albuquerque joins a growing list of cities targeted by the Justice Department over allegations of brutality and violations of constitutional rights. Seattle, Denver, New Orleans and Los Angles are among others whose departments have operated under oversight from independent monitors amid similar complaints.

In the Albuquerque probe, federal investigators focused on 37 shootings, finding that the majority were unreasonable and violated constitutional rights. They also uncovered a significant number of instances in which officers used less lethal measures such as Tasers in an unconstitutional manner.

Shortly after the results of the nearly two-year investigation were released in April, the department saw a new spike in fatal shootings, including that of a homeless camper who was fired on as he appeared to be surrendering. Video of that shooting sparked national outrage and led to series of sometimes violent protests, an attempted takeover of a city council meeting and a sit-in at the mayor’s office.

LawOfficer: Video Released of Albuquerque, Sandia Shooting

The latest shooting came this week, when officers killed a 33-year-old man who they say pulled a gun as they were attempting to arrest him on a federal warrant. Jeremy Joe also was facing charges of aggravated assault on a police officer with a deadly weapon stemming for a case earlier this year.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  July 25, 2014  

Man shot to death in Pacoima following verbal dispute

PACOIMA – A 29-year-old man was shot and later died after a verbal dispute in Pacoima early today.The shooting occurred on the 13000 block of Pearce Street around 1 a.m., Los Angeles Police Department Sgt. Derek Brown said.Brown said the 28-year-old su…

  July 25, 2014