[Hpn] LAPD officers punished for reporting misconduct, claims lawsuit (fwd) (fwd)

Tom Boland wgcp@earthlink.net
Sat, 27 Jan 2001 14:23:14 -0800 (PST)

CIRCULATE PLEASE to Civil Rights supporters & related lists: http://newsfinder.arinet.com/fpweb/fp.dll/$stargeneral/htm/x_dv.htm/_ibyx/cg0302 6/_itox/starnet/_svc/news/_Id/699513483/_k/VHE9okhCmu0CpXGq FWD Associated Press - AP Wire Service - Jan 25, 2001 Photo Advisory LA104 LAWSUIT CLAIMS LA OFFICERS PUNISHED FOR REPORTING MISCONDUCT By PAUL CHAVEZ Associated Press Writer LOS ANGELES (AP) _ A lawsuit against the Police Department claims nearly 200 officers were punished for reporting misconduct and illegal activities. The lawsuit, which claims the officers suffered discrimination, harassment and other forms of retaliation for whistle-blowing, seeks class-action status. A federal judge was scheduled to hold a hearing on the issue Friday. ``Some of these officers reported beatings of homeless people, the killing of homeless people and the planting of drugs on innocent suspects,'' attorney Bradley Gage of Woodland Hills told a press conference Thursday. The lawsuit is not specifically linked to the Rampart corruption case in which officers are alleged to have framed innocent people, but the plaintiffs claim that a ``code of silence'' throughout the department contributed to that scandal. Officer Jason Lee, a department spokesman, said that police officials would not comment on the pending lawsuit, which names the department, Chief Bernard Parks and several high-ranking city officials as defendants. The Police Department and city attorney's office have not handed over documents and reports related to the lawsuit, Gage said. An assistant city attorney in the police employment law section said the documents have not been released because the court has ordered a stay until more information is gathered from the plaintiffs. ``We don't know who the bona fide plaintiffs are,'' Assistant City Attorney Jess J. Gonzalez said. ``We have at least four or five people who have told us they don't want to be members of this case.'' The city's lawyers will ask U.S. District Court Judge Florence-Marie Cooper to continue the stay until all the plaintiffs are identified, Gonzalez said. ``We'll cooperate with the process when the process is done right,'' Gonzalez said. ``We don't think it's been done right in this case.'' Some of the plaintiffs named in the lawsuit already are involved in other lawsuits or have had their cases previously settled, Gonzalez said. The lawsuit was originally filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court in August, but has since been amended to add more plaintiffs and has been moved to federal court. The lawsuit fell under federal jurisdiction, Gage said, because the complaints include civil rights and discrimination claims covered under federal code. The lawsuit also claims the Police Department has liability under the federal Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act. AP-WS-01-25-01 2139EST Received Id AP10102538282675 on Jan 25 2001 20:39 END FORWARD **In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107, this material is distributed without charge or profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving this type of information for non-profit research and educational purposes only.** For constantly updating news coverage by and about homeless people, BOOKMARK HPN "Year 2000" Archives URL below: Visit HPN for CONSTANTLY UPDATING NEWS on Homeless People: *************************************************************** Over 10,000 articles by or via homeless & ex-homeless people Been Homeless? Then JOIN! EMAIL Tom Boland <wgcp@earthlink.net> Nothing About Us Without Us - Democratize Public Policy ***************************************************************