LAPD Officers Disable Monitoring Equipment On Roughly 100 Cars . . . Police Chief Blocks Any Investigation of the Officers Responsible

Lapd_badgeA new report concludes that Los Angeles police officers have widely tampered with voice recording equipment to block monitoring of their actions on duty. Officers have been tearing off the antennas of their cruisers to prevent transmitting signals. Yet, there is not a single reported case of a single officer been disciplined, let alone fired. Indeed, none will be investigated.

We have previously discussed officers tampering with monitoring equipment by disabling or turning them off.

Investigators found about half of the estimated 80 cars in one South L.A. patrol division were missing antennas. Another 10 cars were disabled in other divisions.

220px-Charles_Beck_in_2011Here is the most disturbing line is this one from the article below: “LAPD Chief Charlie Beck and other top officials learned of the problem last summer but chose not to investigate which officers were responsible.” Really? Officers destroy public property to prevent their conduct from being observed and Chief Beck decided not to investigate and charge them? Somehow I doubt that is the approach to citizens who destroy LAPD or city property.

Instead of investigating the potentially criminal acts, Beck issued warnings against continued destruction.

Making things worse, the Department waited to notify the Police Commission, which oversees the department, even though this equipment is designed to protect the public as well as officers. That led to criticism from commission President Steve Soboroff that they were left in the dark.

What is truly astonishing is that most of the destruction occurred in the Southeast Division, which limits the officers and supervisors involved in the misconduct. That would have made this an easier matter to investigate. Yet, Beck ordered that no investigation occur and did not immediately inform the Commission that is tasked with this type of matter. That should raise an equally pressing question of the suitability for Beck as Chief of Police, but it appears that he is another officer who is unlikely to be held accountable in this scandal.,0,7666331.story#ixzz2yPEshY00

43 thoughts on “LAPD Officers Disable Monitoring Equipment On Roughly 100 Cars . . . Police Chief Blocks Any Investigation of the Officers Responsible”

  1. Chuck is right about how treating people like human beings can go a long way.

    Back in the late 1980’s there was a detective for a large city in my state, who was assigned to the gang unit and was active with the bangers but had a good rapport with them.

    Some neo-nazi skinhead group elected to hold a demonstration in the city and he was assigned to perform extra duty there in-case trouble erupted.

    While the demonstration was getting started a group of gang bangers stood by, curious as what was going on. Later, one of the skinheads walked behind the detective, pulled out a club and hit him over the back of the head; knocking him unconscious.

    The bangers rushed over and handed the skinhead his ass. They then ran off the rest of the nazis. No more parade !

    I guess the bangers felt they would be damned if they let some skinhead harm THEIR gang officer.

  2. Wayne, I was an investigator for the prosecuting attorneys office in KC. Since I don’t believe in the death penalty I believe no one should be on death row. The prosecutor for whom I worked was tough and righteous. She always demanded that her staff turn over exculpatory evidence to the defense. Unfortunately, folks like her are a rare breed. She got fed up w/ being a prosecutor, became a cop[one of the first in KC] and retired as a major a couple years ago.

    1. Nick,’s nice knowing some people care about doing a proper job, particularly when someone’s liberty and freedom are at risk.

      I too don’t support the death penalty. I once saw a play in San Francisco that I think was called ~”The Exonerated” which left a lasting impression with me. True stories of death row inmates released after a thorough review of their case established their innocence–usually by DNA evidence.

  3. Wayne, We agree that violence is unacceptable. However, I am a pragmatist and I consider the amount of violence, in the prison I worked, as laudable considering the sociopaths and psychopaths housed together. Leavenworth was not overcrowded. Federal Prisons are well run and staffed.

    1. Nick,

      This is a difficult situation without any easy solutions. I am glad to hear your opinions and must agree that with the number of psychological misfits things could be a lot worse.

      Another troubling issue for me is what appears to be a number of innocent people that are incarcerated, particularly those on death row. However, that is not a concern for correctional officers but something that LEOs and DAs need to address. From my perspective it seems at times that Police and Prosecutors zero in on a suspect and then put on a pair of blinders.

      Thank you for your input, it has been insightful and appreciated.

  4. A couple of weeks ago I sat through jury selection process at the L.A. Superior Court in Inglewood, Ca. The judge asked every potential juror whether they tended to believe or not believe the testimony of arresting police officers. Most of the prospective jurists said they would blindly accept the testimony of any police officer. While I never made it from the audience to the jury box as I was the last person in line, I almost wish I had – in order to mention one word – Rampart, and then, of course the multiple police shootings in New Mexico, or the Orange County Sheriff’s shootings, or perhaps the wonderful forfeiture cases in Texas recently reported in The New Yorker. The sad fact is, is that given the sheer number of reports like these combined with the well known ability of police to stick up for one another, my first tendency would be to be very skeptical.

  5. Wayne, Someone deleted a comment I made to you for no reason. I said we all have dark moments and you certainly don’t need to apologize for it. We are all flawed humans. It was a positive comment. WTF?

    1. Not a problem Nick.
      As someone totally unfamiliar with prisons I have a hard time understanding the violence that seems to be part of the normal routine. But given some of the conditions that were described to me on this thread it is somewhat easier to comprehend—although the violence is still unacceptable.

  6. in reading all the comments there was a couple things left out of the dynamics of both sides meaning legal illegal. and the dynamics left out from the illegal side is prisoners who are locked up and are innocent. and know they are innocent but no one listens, and if they’re poor forget it. the anger comes from help and hope lessness framed by cops, da’s etc and then going to prison and being treated inhumanely by co’s. that is a anger that is never let go and there is no way to work out. just recenlty there are a few stories of men and a woman who lost 20+ yrs of their lives in prison for crimes they didnt commit. no amount of money or apologies can return those years to you…

    legal side we now cops,da’s judges, co’s who are three times more corrupt then half the prisoners and they get away with their crimes.. they frame innocent people.. beat them. steal their lives etc and even when the truth comes out they dont pay for it.. they dont go to jail. the most punishment is they may get fired but are allowed to keep their pensions or benefits..

    Even if in time they are found to be innocent.. they have no education or anyway of getting a job. they have a record and jobs are hard to find with college degrees try finding one without one after not having worked 10-20 yrs with a record.. They are always viewed with suspicion by people. and there is one race who has more then every right to be four times angry at their treatment.. knowing the crime they committed was lesser or the same as others yet they were given 20 to life while another was given parole or probation..

    and in todays leo climate the only one applying for the academies were all bullied as kids and now its their turn for revenge.. or they have every intention of being a legal criminal from the start….

  7. What Paul said.

    Wayne, one very snowy night in February 2013, my daughter was scheduled to work 6:00PM to 6:00AM. It had rained and the roads were wet, then the temperature plummeted, the rain changed to snow, and the snowplows were not keeping up. It was as slick as I have ever seen it. I would not let her take her car. I drove her to work in the Jeep, and it was a scary drive. When we got there, the parking lot was empty except for several snow-covered cars belonging to the day shift. She was alarmed, “There’s nobody here!”

    We waited a few minutes, and a 4WD pickup pulled in. She was relieved, saying that was the Corporal’s truck. I asked her if she had extra rations in her lunch kit, because she might have to pull a double (24 hour) shift. She did, getting out and going into the building with the Corporal. Next morning, I was up early to go get her, when she came walking in the door. Corporal had brought her home, but could not get up our driveway, even in his truck. She walked up the hill from the road.

    I asked her how it went. She said, “Tense.” Only five officers made it in to work. One other female and three males. The five of them had to manage a huge four story jail, including the open pods.

    Several of the inmates had already told her that they had her back, and if anyone tried to start something with her, they would take care of it. I have preached to her that you can be friendly without being friends. They knew she is fearless, and did not tolerate nonsense. She made the observation that it’s easier to break up a fight before it starts than after. She is firm, but fair.

    I have been with her shopping or out to eat any number of times, when some person comes up to her and thanks her for being respectful to them while they were locked up. One other thing. She cultivated more informants than any other CO for that very reason.

    And that’s the way it’s done.

    1. Thank you Dr. Stanley,

      You and Paul have really helped me gain a better understanding of what life must be like inside some prisons.

      I wish your daughter well, she seems like a decent honorable individual with a very tough, demanding and dangerous job.

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